April 26, 2014
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Ben Smith and Jacob Page knocked in runs and Army collected seven hits to beat Navy, 2-1, Saturday in the second game of a doubleheader at a blustery Max Bishop Stadium.
Army and Navy split Saturday's doubleheader after stellar pitching from Army.
“It was a tough game one,” said Army interim head coach Matt Reid. “Their pitcher threw well. We regrouped in the dugout between games. We said that game is over and this game is the biggest game of the season for us. Nothing else matters. Let’s play it the right way, let’s play it hard. We came out and were able to scrap and manufacture a couple of runs. “
Alex Robinett started on the mound for Army and scattered five hits over 5.2 innings of work. He struck out seven and walked three before giving way to Brian Hapeman. Hapeman went the rest of the way earning his third save. He fired 3.1 innings, struck out two and did not walk a batter.
Army improved to 29-13 overall and 12-5 in Patriot League games. Navy moved to 23-24 overall and 9-9 in league contests.
“We got really good pitching again from Alex and Brian and our defense played well,” said Reid. “We were able to turn a couple of key double plays.”
Navy, which won the opener 4-0, jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Robert Currie led off the inning with a double and scored when Travis Blue singled up the middle. Navy later loaded the bases but Army shortstop Alex Jensen snared a line drive and threw to Kris Lindner at second to end the inning.
Army knotted the game in the third inning. Alex Jensen took a high pitch and sent it into left field and hustled to make it a double. Smith then delivered a single to score Jensen and tie the game at 1.
The Black Knights took their first lead of the series in the fourth inning. Mark McCants doubled to open the frame and Lindner singled. Lindner stole second to put runners on second and third before Page knocked in McCants with a ground out for a 2-1 advantage.
Hapeman kept the lead intact. Navy had two runners in the seventh but Hapeman got Navy's leading hitter Kash Manzelli to ground into a double play and then struck out the number four hitter David Norman to end the frame.
Navy had a chance to knot the game in its final at-bat. With two outs, Travis Blue was hit by a pitch. Hapeman though struck out Manzelli looking to end the game.
Army will play a doubleheader against Navy Sunday beginning at noon at Max Bishop Stadium.
GAME NOTES: Army wore its all gray road uniforms ... Major Arthur Coughlin served as the team's Officer Representative ... Navy holds a slight 110-105 lead in the all-time baseball series against Navy ... Army now leads Navy 15-13 in the overall series against Navy in 2014.