Lions ace Profs’ makeup test

The College’s baseball team went 2-1 on the road this week, defeating Rowan University and splitting a Saturday doubleheader against Montclair State University.

With a record of 17-7 overall and 5-3 in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC), the Lions are ranked 11th in NCAA Division III.

Remembering the 10-inning loss the Profs handed them a week before, the Lions got revenge with the 4-3 win in 10 innings on Friday.

“We were really going after them since they had recently beaten us at our place in extra innings,” senior third baseman Matt Zonies said. “All the NJAC games are pretty important for us, so we tried to get out there and take from them at their field.”

The Lions had a 2-0 lead in the first inning when sophomore shortstop Jeff Toth and senior first baseman Blake Bullis scored off a Profs error. An RBI by junior center fielder Dave Mebs tacked on another run for the Lions in the fifth inning.

The game was sent into extra innings when the Profs tied the game at three with three runs in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Toth scored the game-winning run on an error in the top of the 10th inning. After getting on base with a single, Toth stole second and continued to third on an error. He went on to score after another error. Toth led the Lions at the plate after a 2-for-4 performance with two runs scored.

Senior pitcher Dave Waseleski earned his fourth win of the season, pitching 2-1/3 innings and allowing one run in relief.

“It was a close game just like we thought it would be going into their place,” Zonies said. “The win was also good for us because we picked up some momentum going into the doubleheader on Saturday.”

Stifled by Montclair’s junior pitcher Jario Mendez, the Lions were only able to produce one run in the opening game, falling by a score of 3-1.

Junior pitcher Bob Buskett suffered the first loss of his career on the mound for the Lions. After 7-2/3 innings of work and only one earned run, Buskett now has a career record of 12-1.

Mendez threw 125 pitches in his complete-game effort. He allowed only six hits and struck out five Lions, earning his first win of the season.

An error-filled second inning by the Lions allowed the Red Hawks to pick up two runs. Two fielding errors and a hit batter loaded the bases when freshman infielder Andrew Himmelfarb capitalized for Montclair with a two-run single down the middle.

Toth put the Lions on the board in the fourth inning, scoring off a groundout, but Mendez did not allow another run.

The second game saw the Lions’ bats heat up as they drove in six runs in the first three innings en route to a 6-1 victory.

Bullis drove in two runs in the first inning with a single up the middle. Junior catcher Bill Kropp and Toth each contributed their own RBI singles in the second inning to give the Lions a 4-0 lead. Kropp and Toth each finished with three hits.

In the third inning, senior second baseman Andrew Cosgrove drove in senior catcher Gerard Haran from second base, while senior right fielder Tyler Hall helped the final Lions run score with a sacrifice fly ball.

“In the first game we were having a little trouble with their pitcher,” Zonies said. “The second game we pumped ourselves up and ended up scoring early. We jumped right out at them with a few early runs and they got a little bit down on themselves. After that we just held on to the lead.”

Junior pitcher Mike Oliver picked up the win on the mound for the Lions and is 3-0 on the season. He struck out seven Red Hawks and walked two in the nightcap.

Monday’s match against Rutgers University-Camden was canceled due to inclement weather.

The Lions continue on the road against Richard Stockton College tomorrow at 3:30 p.m. and Rutgers University-Camden on Friday at 3:30 p.m. in conference play.