March 11, 2012

BASEBALL | Red Takes Three of Four on Road Trip

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The Red started off the 2012 season with its best start, 6-0, since 1906, but lost to GW in its third game of the weekend on Sunday to end the streak. Cornell headed back to the Mid-Atlantic region to face George Washington in a four-game series spanning Saturday and Sunday. The Red is continuing its 20-game stretch on the road before beginning its Ivy League opener on March 31st against Ivy foe, Harvard.

On Saturday the Red (7-1) swept GW (2-10), 6-3, in the first game and 5-3 in the second. Sophomore pitchers Connor Kaufmann and freshman pitcher Brent Jones improved to 2-0 this season as they each earned a win. Senior Marshall Yanzick expanded his hitting streak to 13 games since last year. The Red produced 23 hits for the day, with eight different players recording hits in the opener. Senior Brian Billigen had five hits, including a 4-for-4 performance in the nightcap. Billigen was also named the Ivy League Player of the Week on Tuesday.

“I thought this weekend was a success,” said junior infielder Brandon Peters. “We went 3-1 and lost a close run game. Pitchers threw extremely well and we continued to hit … The team is in a good place right now.”

Cornell continued into Sunday on a high note, but ended up losing to GW, 4-3. The Colonials scored two runs in the sixth and one run in the seventh and eighth innings to put them up by two.

The Red staged a comeback in the top of the ninth when senior Frank Hager and senior Brandon Lee both delivered singles to put runners on the corners with two outs. Sophomore Ben Swinford then connected with a double to right that scored Hager to put the Red within one, but a strikeout ended the game for Cornell’s first loss of the season.

However, the Red came back in the last of the four games to avenge the tough loss of the morning with a 12-3 win over the Colonials. In the second game the Red came out strong, scoring eight runs in the first four innings before the Colonials could even get on the board. Five of the Red’s hitters produced multiple hits during the game to ensure a victory for Cornell.

Peters scored four runs during the second game. Billigen and sophomore Chris Cruz both hit home-runs in the decisive victory.

The Red will hit the road for a 10-game Spring Break trip. The team will play a pair of double headers at Delaware before continuing South to Old Dominion, then to Virginia Tech for two games and finally to Longwood for four.

“The ultimate goal has been since day one to win an Ivy League championship and play in a regional,” Peters said. “We have a very talented team that is extremely motivated with only that end goal in sight.”

Original Author: Haley Velasco

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