April 10, 2013
Box Score (.pdf)
WEST POINT, N.Y. -
Justin Reece went 3-for-4 with two runs scored, and Patrick Mescher finished 2-for-5 with two RBI and one run scored as the Army baseball team defeated Fordham, 8-2, in a non-league game Wednesday afternoon at Doubleday Field.
Six Army pitchers limited Fordham (12-20) to four hits in the contest, and the Black Knights (12-16) combined to score eight runs over the third and fourth innings en route to the victory.
Michael Sands also collected multiple hits for Army, going 2-for-4 with one run scored. Harold Earls had a big day at the plate, finishing 1-for-3 with three RBI and one run scored.
Erik Washburn (1-0) pitched three scoreless innings of relief to pick up his first career victory for the Black Knights. He did not yield a hit and faced the minimum nine batters during his stint on the mound. John Malcolm and Julian Larimer each worked one scoreless frame to nail down the win.
"It was nice to see so many guys contribute offensively today," said Army head coach Joe Sottolano. "I thought our lineup had a lot of length and, although we only scored in those two innings, we hit balls hard throughout the game. I was also encouraged by the way we competed on the mound."
Fordham jumped on top 1-0 in the top of the first inning as Tim Swatek led off the game with a double and scored on Joseph Runco's RBI single.
After failing to score against Fordham starting pitcher Cody Johnson (2-2) over the first two innings, Army pushed across four runs on three hits in the bottom of the third to assume a 4-1 advantage. Reece ignited the Black Knights' rally with a leadoff double and Jon Crucitti was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. Earls then executed a sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position and Alex Jensen drew a walk to load the bases. Mescher then drilled an RBI single, plating Reece with the first run of the inning. Crucitti also scored on the play following a Fordham throwing error. Jacob Page followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 3-0, and Brock Davidson's RBI single capped the uprising.
Army scored four more runs in the fourth inning to extend its advantage to 8-1. Sands, Reece and Crucitti hit consecutive singles to begin the frame and Earls crushed a three-run double into the gap in right center field to clear the bases. Earls later scored on Mescher's second RBI single of the contest.
The run support was more than enough for Army's pitching staff to work with. The Black Knights held Fordham without another hit until the seventh inning when Ryan Phelan's RBI single trimmed Army's cushion to 8-2. The Black Knights' infield also turned three double plays behind the Army hurlers, ending Fordham threats in the first, fifth and sixth innings.
Johnson allowed eight runs (seven earned) on nine hits and three walks over four innings of work. Ryan Fedak came out of the Fordham bullpen and tossed four innings of scoreless relief to keep the Rams within striking distance. The sidearm specialist allowed three hits and faced just three over the minimum during his outing.
Army returns to its Patriot League schedule this weekend when the Black Knights travel to Easton, Pa., to face Lafayette in a four-game series. The teams are slated to play doubleheaders both days beginning at 12 p.m.
Game Notes: Army improves to 44-46-1 all-time against Fordham ... the Black Knights outhit the Rams by a 12-4 margin ... Army recorded four errors in the contest, while Fordham committed one miscue ... Brock Davidson recorded his first career hit and RBI in today's game ... Harold Earls registered his first triple of the season ... Earls also matched his career high with three runs batted in ... Michael Sands equaled his career high with two hits ... Justin Reece established a career best with three hits.