Saints, RPI trade pitching gems
Saint senior Joe Riley pitched a two hit shutout to keep St. Lawrence University's Liberty League playoff hopes alive in game one of a league doubleheader with RPI on Saturday, but the Engineers Greg Echeverria threw a gem of his own in game two, mathematically eliminating the Saints in the playoff race.
SLU won game one 2-0, but RPI bounced back with a 5-1 win in game two. The two teams are scheduled to play two more at Tom Fay Field on Sunday starting at noon.Riley shut the Engineers out of two hits in game one, walking three and striking out six. RPI had two on in the second, fourth and fifth, but Riley got a key strikeout in each of those innings to keep it scoreless.
The Saints scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fourth when Mark Syron hit a one-out single and went to second on an error. After a brief rain delay, RPI pitcher Sean Conroy got a line out to center, but Devin Robson singled down the right field line to drive in the run. SLU added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth when Syron was hit by a pitch with one out and scored on an outfield error after Khifer O'Connor's single.
Echeverria pitched a complete game in the 5-1 game two win for the Engineers, allowing seven hits and striking out five.
RPI jumped out to a 3-0 lead with two in the top of the first on Shane Matthews' two-run double in the top of the first and a Tim LeSeur single in the top of the second. The Saints got their only run off Echeverria in the bottom of the third when Brian Palmero singled with two out in the bottom of the third and scored on Syron's double.
The Engineers tacked on a pair of insurance runs in the top of the fifth when Al Mersman delivered a two-out two-run double.
RPI will take a 23-11 overall mark and a 12-8 league record into Sunday's scheduled second doubleheader between the teams while the Saints are now 18-13 overall and 10-9 in league play.