March 15, 2014
TAMPA, Fla. - Brock Davidson reached on an error to score the winning run with one out in the 10th inning as Army rallied to beat the University of Massachusetts, 4-3, Saturday at Tampa Jesuit High School.
Davidson's ground ball was misplayed to score pinch-runner Justin Reece in the first game of a doubleheader.
Army improved to 8-5 after playing its first extra innings game of the season.
Patrick Mescher and Jacob Page knocked in runs in the eighth inning for Army but UMass tied it in the ninth.
Army collected eight hits in its first game its spring Florida trip, including a pair from Mescher and Daniel Cortes. Jon Crucitti, Harold Earls, Connor Love and Grant Van Orden also recorded base hits.
Freshman Johnny Griffith collected his first career victory, throwing 1.2 innings. He allowed two hits and struck out one. Army starting pitcher Nick Dignacco went 6.1 innings, allowing two earned runs. He did not walk a batter and struck out seven. Brian Hapeman entered for Dignacco and pitched out of a jam in the seventh when he fired home on a bunt to end the inning with the bases loaded. After UMass tied the game in the ninth, Griffith took the mound. Hapeman allowed one run and struck out two in two innings of work.
The Black Knights got on the scoreboard first, pushing across a run in the fifth. Cortes led off the inning with a single and moved to second on Love's sacrifice bunt. Van Orden delivered a single to center to plate Cortes.
UMass knotted the score at 1 in the top of the sixth inning with a pair of singles, including a run-scoring base hit from Kyle Adie
The Minutemen went ahead, briefly, in the seventh inning when Brandon Walsh singled, scoring Adam Picard who doubled.
Army answered in the eighth inning with two runs. Crucitti and Earls opened the inning with singles, prompting a pitching change. After Earls stole second, Mark McCants walked to load the bases. Page was hit by a pitch to force in Crucitti and Mescher singled to center to score Earls and give Army a 3-2 lead.
UMass tied the game again in the top of the ninth. Nik Campero walked with one out. Pinch-runner Dan Jonah stole second and took third on an errant throw. Walsh singled for the second time to tie the game at 2.
Army won it in the bottom of the 10th. Page walked to start the frame but was thrown out at second on a bunt by Mescher. Reece entered as a pinch-runner and moved to second when Alex Jensen was hit by a pitch. Cortes singled to advance the runners. Davidson then pinch-hit and plated Reece with the winning run.
Army will play the second game of Saturday's doubleheader against Massachusetts at 3:30 p.m.