Lions drop home opener to Bears

The College’s baseball team fell in its home opener on Thursday against Ursinus College by a score of 5-2.

The loss drops the No. 4 ranked Lions to 8-4 on the season, while Ursinus improves to 8-3.

“I think we still have a lot of work to do,” junior pitcher Bob Buskett said. “We are playing good baseball and are winning games, but we are going to have a lot more fun once we play our best baseball.”

Lions junior center fielder Dave Mebs started the offense by hitting a double down the first base line, leading off the bottom of the first inning. After advancing to third, Mebs scored via a sacrifice fly ball to give the Lions the lead.

A double by senior second baseman Andrew Cosgrove in the bottom of the second allowed him to score an unearned run later in the inning to double the Lions’ lead.

The Bears’ managed to tie the game during the top of the fourth inning. Needing only one hit, Ursinus crossed the plate twice after a double and a fly out to center field.

Taking the lead in the fifth inning, the Bears used a sacrifice bunt to move runners into scoring position. Sophomore first baseman David Randolph singled to right field for Ursinus, earning two RBIs and the game winning hit. The Bears tacked on another run in the top of the sixth due to a pitching error, extending its lead to 5-2.

“We could not get anything going after we fell behind by three runs,” sophomore infielder Vince Mazzaccaro said. “Once we were not getting any runs, we tried to get them all back at once. So, as the game went on we kept putting more and more pressure on ourselves.”

With 10 players left on base, the Lions fought hard but could not capitalize on runners in scoring position.

The Lions almost broke through in the bottom of the ninth inning. With two outs, senior infielder Matt Zonies doubled to center field. Mebs and senior right fielder Jeff Botti both walked to load the bases, but a groundout by senior designated hitter Gerard Haran ended the game for the Lions.

Junior pitcher Brad Kittle suffered the loss on the mound for the Lions. After six innings pitched and four earned runs his record falls to 1-2 this year.

“Our (pitching) staff as a whole has not been pitching to our potential,” Buskett said. “Our entire staff has returned from last year and with the experience and talent that we have, there is no substitute for success. Things are going to get a lot better from here on out, and be ready to watch some exciting baseball.”

Friday’s game against Haverford College was rained out and will be played on a later date.

The Lions will host Gwynedd-Mercy College today at 3 p.m. in a game that was rescheduled from March 23.