YAPHANK, N.Y. (March 23, 2015) – The USMMA baseball team lost its Landmark series-finale to Drew University, 5-4, on Monday night out at Baseball Heaven. The Mariners led 4-2 going into the last inning, but the Rangers scored three times in the top of the ninth to take the lead and eventually held off Merchant Marine in the bottom half for the victory.
The Mariners fall to 7-4 (5-1 Landmark) and Drew improves to 4-8 (3-2 Landmark).
After the Rangers scored one run in the top of the first without getting a hit, USMMA responded with two in the bottom half of the inning. Leadoff hitter, freshman Jacob Sithong (Orlando, Fla.), knocked his third homer of the series over the right field wall to tie the score up at 1-1. Then later in the inning after a double by freshman Michael Barnes (Alexandria, Va.), the rookie scored after a passed ball advanced him to third and he rushed home on the same play when the catcher threw the ball into left field.
Merchant Marine added another run in the bottom of the fourth on an RBI-ground out by freshman Steve Lucy (Leawood, Kan.) that plated senior Cameron Stadele (Alpharetta, Ga.). Drew scored one to make it 3-2 in the next half-inning after a fielding error on a single allowed a Ranger baserunner to score from second base.
In the bottom of the fifth, junior Zack De St. Germain (Eagle, Idaho) led off with a walk and then stole second and advanced to third when the catchers throw went into center field. Barnes knocked him home with an RBI-single to left to put the Mariners ahead, 4-2.
The score stayed that way until the top of the ninth. The Rangers hit back-to-back one-out, RBI doubles that tied the score at 4-4 and then, with two outs, a single that dropped into right put the visitors ahead, 5-4.
Despite getting a two-out baserunner in the bottom of the ninth, the Mariners lost on a groundout to first.
Barnes finished the game 3-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored. Sithong was 2-for-5, also with an RBI and a run.
Junior Kyle Clausen (Southold, N.Y./Southold) got the starting nod and pitched six innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and striking out two. Classmate Brad Suciu (Zanesville, Ohio) came in in the seventh and hurled two scoreless innings of relief and walked two batters, but didn't give up a hit. The loss was suffered by freshman Josh Ellington (San Leon, Texas), who moves to 3-1 on the season. Senior Reed Buck (Lawrenceville, Ga.) got out of the ninth inning pitching the final two outs and allowing just one hit and striking out one.
The Mariners will return to action on Wednesday, March 25, with a "road game" against City College of New York that will be played at Lower Roosevelt Field. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. Be sure to stay logged on to www.USMMASports.com for the official team news for the Merchant Marine Academy. Also, be sure to follow USMMA Athletics on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for up-to-the-minute news regarding your favorite Mariner teams.