Photo by Leon Skov.
OLD WESTBURY, N.Y. (April 14, 2019) – The U.S. Merchant Marine Academy baseball team split its road Skyline Conference doubleheader out at Old Westbury on Sunday, taking the opener, 5-2, before dropping the second game by the final of 7-4. With the split, the Mariners' record moves to 22-9 (12-4 Skyline), while the Panthers' record moves to 15-13-1 (10-6 Skyline).
Game 1 Highlights
- Senior John Kelly Jr. (Apex, N.C.) got the start and the victory, lasting eight innings and giving up two runs – one in the second inning and another in the sixth – on just five hits with five strikeouts. He moves to 3-1 on the season.
- Classmate Kyle Cunningham (Panama City Beach, Fla.) earned his third save of the week and his eighth of the season, pitching a clean 1-2-3 ninth inning.
- After falling behind by a run in the second on an RBI groundout by Panther sophomore Joshua Cruz, the Mariners responded right back in the top of the third with a pair of runs to take the lead on an RBI by sophomore Vincenzo Alteri (Watertown, N.Y.) on an error that scored classmate Colin Baker (Clyde Hill, Wash.), followed by a groundout by Cunningham that brought home senior Jesse Reinebold (Sagamihara, Japan).
- Merchant Marine tacked on three more runs in the fifth when sophomore Alex Mesaros (Pittsburgh, Pa.) drew a bases-loaded walk to score freshman Garrett Aichele (Bainbridge Island, Wash.). The next batter, junior Matt Mundorf (San Luis Obispo, Calif.) drove in two on a base hit that plated Reinebold and Cunningham to make it 5-1.
- The Panthers' run in the sixth came on a solo home run by senior John Condon, but that just made the game a save situation for the Mariners' closer.
- The Mariners had three players with multi-hit games – Reinebold (2-for-5), Alteri (2-for-5) and Baker (2-for-4).
Game 2 Highlights
- Sophomore Joe Raab (Edwardsburg, Mich.) suffered his first loss of the season, hurling 4.1 innings of six-run ball (four earned) with nine hits allowed and three strikeouts. He drops to 4-1 on the year.
- Freshman Billy Todd (Gastonia, N.C.) faced two batters in the fifth, allowing an unearned run, before sophomore Quinton Heck (Massillon, Ohio) came in for the final 1.1 innings, not allowing a hit or a run. Todd and Heck did fall victim to a couple wild pitches and a passed ball in the fifth, however, which scored three Panther runs.
- The Mariners jumped on the board first in the top of the opening inning with an RBI single by Cunningham that scored Aichele and then an RBI single by freshman Zac Skov (San Clemente, Calif.) that brought in Cunningham.
- Old Westbury answered right back in the bottom of the first on an RBI double by sophomore Peter Capel followed by a passed ball that scored a run.
- The Panthers made it 4-2 in the bottom of the fourth on a two-RBI double by sophomore Michael Borsch.
- Aichele was a perfect 4-for-4 in the game, as he knocked a triple in the second inning, while Cunningham and Skov both finished the day 2-for-3.
- Aside from Aichele's triple, freshman Joshua Costlow (Lithia, Fla.) had the Mariners' only other extra-base hit with a double in the seventh. He later came around to score on a single by Baker as part of a two-run top of the seventh for Merchant Marine. Reinebold also had an RBI fielder's choice in the inning that brought in Baker.
Up next, the Mariners will travel to the College of Staten Island this coming Wednesday, April 17, for a non-conference game at the Dolphins' CSI Baseball Complex. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Live stats and a live video feed of the game will be available with links on the USMMA Baseball Schedule Page.
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