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April 5, 2014

MacKinnon Supplies Clutch RBI Hits in Twin Bill Sweep of Drew

Madison, NJ - Andrew MacKinnon (Buffalo, NY) had the game winning RBI hits in both of the USMMA baseball team's victories in Saturday's double header against Landmark Conference rival Drew.  Patrick Morgan (Roxboro, NC) pitched an eight-inning complete game in the second game of the double header as the freshmen earned his first collegiate victory behind eight strikeouts while not allowing an earned run.  Timothy Arner (Allentown, PA) secured his fourth win of the 2014 season with a six-inning, two-run outing in the opening game.

Drew (7-10, 1-3 Landmark) started the scoring in the first game of the day with a three run first inning.  Al Krause plated the first marker with a RBI single and Jonathan Rodrigues made it 2-0 by drawing a bases loaded walk.  The Rangers capped the frame with a Matthew Kaplon sacrifice fly that ended the first inning with the home team on top, 3-0.

U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (11-6-1, 2-3 Landmark) broke through in the top of the fourth as Danny Collins (Sleepy Hollow, NY) launched a solo homerun, his first long ball of the season.  Jacob Wood (Fairfax, VA) continued to chip away for the Mariners with a RBI single to bring the visitors within one run.  Grant Foley (Butler, PA) was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to force home Jake Martin (San Diego, CA) with the game tying run.  

MacKinnon broke the game open with a bases clear hit down the right field line as USMMA took its first lead of the day at 6-3.  The Mariners got an insurance run in the top of the seventh and Cameron Stadele (Alpharetta, GA) got the final three outs as U.S. Merchant Marine Academy secured the 7-3 triumph.

Drew pushed across an unearned run in the bottom of the second inning of the nightcap but that would be all Morgan would surrender to the Rangers.  However, the Mariners offense also went quiet as Drew took a 1-0 advantage into the seventh inning thanks to the pitching of Drew Blanco.  

Warren Hartmann (Wyckoff, NJ) started the seventh inning with a base hit up the middle and was replaced at first base after a fielder's choice from Collins.  Collins successfully stole second to put the tying run in scoring position; he is now 13-for-13 on steal attempts this season.  Stadele singled to left field to bring home Collins, knotting the game at 1-1 and eventually sending it to extra innings.

MacKinnon came up with two outs in the top of the eighth and roped a single to right field that drove in the pinch running Joseph Konzen (Eau Claire, WI) and give USMMA a 2-1 edge.  Morgan would have to work his way out of a jam in the bottom of the eighth as Drew threatened by loading the bases with one out.  The freshman hurler got a huge strikeout of Bobby Miskura for the second out and the game ended on a Mike Klinger line out to Hartmann at second base. 

The USMMA baseball team will look for the three-game series sweep tomorrow at 12:00 PM.