RICHMOND, Va. – The Stags of Fairfield University plated
two runs in the top of the ninth to lead them to a 6-4 victory over
the Virginia Commonwealth University baseball in the series finale
of a four-game set between the two schools.
Junior Joe Van Meter (Oyster Bay, N.Y.) and freshman Nick Kime (Stafford, Va.) each had two hits, but the rest of the lineup could only muster up one hit as the Fairfield hurlers managed to keep the Black & Gold offense at bay for much of the afternoon.
"I thought our young arms threw pretty well for us," Head Coach Paul Keyes said. "But to their credit, they had veteran guys who knew how to keep us off balance. We need to be able to make some adjustments and have some guys step up and take the leadership role, which I believe will happen as the season goes along."
The Rams drop to 4-3 on the young 2010 season, while Fairfield improves to 2-2.
Fairfield would get on the board early as Ryan Furbeck reached on a leadoff single and moved to third after a groundout and a wild pitch. David Dudish would plate the game's first run with an RBI groundout to give the Stags a 1-0 advantage.
VCU would respond in the second when junior Doug Otto (Jefferson City, Mo.) reached on a lead-off walk and moved to second on a single from Kime. Sophomore Taylor Perkins (Dinwiddie, Va.) followed by blasting a long RBI single off the right field fence to even the score at 1-1.
Josh Alford (Midlothian, Va.) and Greg Fujii (San Jose, Calif.) would then collect sacrifice flies to plate both Kime and Perkins to give the Rams a 3-1 lead after two frames.
Marco Garamella delivered an RBI single and Furbeck added a sacrifice fly in the top of the fourth as the Stags evened the score at 3-3. Two innings later, an errant throw to first would allow Fairfield to grab the lead once again, 4-3, heading into the final three innings.
Rick Piccirillo and freshman Ryan Farrar (Mechanicsville, Va.) would lock into a reliever's duel until the bottom of the eighth.
Junior Richard Gonzalez (Caugaus, Puerto Rico) started the inning off with a walk and moved to second on a single by Van Meter. After a fielder's choice at third to nail Gonzalez, back-to-back wild pitches allowed Van Meter to scamper home and tie the score at 4-4 heading into the ninth.
Dudish would finally get to Farrar with a one-out double off the base of the left field wall in the top of the ninth and moved to third on a flyout. After an intentional walk put runners on first and third, Garamella struck again with a two-out, two-RBI single into left centerfield to give the Stags a 6-4 lead.
Mark Bordanaro came into for a perfect 1-2-3 save to help the Stags pick up a series split with the Rams.
Haynes had a solid outing with five innings of work, allowing just five hits and three earned runs, while Farrar (0-1) was tagged with the loss, giving up two earned runs in 3.1 innings of relief work.
The Rams are back in action on Tuesday afternoon when they host the Flames of Liberty University in a 3 p.m. contest.