April 24, 2002

Baseball Drops 10th, 11th Straight Games

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Since defeating Yale 5-1 on April 13th to improve to 10-14, the baseball team has lost eleven consecutive contests, dashing the ball club’s one-time Ivy League championship aspirations. The Red’s nightmarish season continued yesterday, as the team traveled to non-conference opponent LeMoyne College for a doubleheader. Losing two tightly contested games by the scores of 8-7 and 7-5 to the MAAC conference leader, the Red is now the owner of an unsightly 10-25 record with ten games remaining in its season.

In the opener, the Dolphins jumped out to a commanding lead, plating seven runs in the third inning. The runs came at the expense of freshman pitcher Tad Bardenwerper, who failed to make it out of the third inning. Junior reliever Mike Martino came out of the bullpen, pitching 3 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing the Red to methodically work its way back into the ball game.

After scoring a combined five runs in the fourth and fifth frames, Cornell knotted the game at seven when senior first baseman Erik Rico blasted a two run home run in the top of the sixth. Unfortunately, the Red’s normally dependable junior closer David Sharfstein was unable to keep LeMoyne’s bats dormant, surrendering the game-winning run in the bottom of the seventh inning. Sharfstein’s third loss of the year tarnished the offensive contributions of sophomore right fielder Chris Schutt, who blasted a three run triple in the fifth, and Rico, who added two RBI.

Head coach Tom Ford tried to remain upbeat about the team’s performance, praising the effort of Schutt by saying, “Chris did a great job. He was really aggressive at the plate. We wanted to see what he could do, and he had a pretty good day.”

Seemingly unfazed by its tenth consecutive defeat in the opener, the Red started quickly in the nightcap, scoring three runs in the first off LeMoyne starter Alan Dreschler. A single by senior center fielder Andrew Luria drove in Cornell’s first two runs, with Schutt adding another RBI on a single to right field.

The lead was short-lived, as sophomore starting pitcher Glenn Morris struggled through 1 2/3 innings, surrendering five runs. Though freshman Matthew Light gave up only two runs in 4 1/3 innings of relief, Cornell could never regain possession of the lead. The teams traded single runs in the fourth inning to make the score 6-4, with the Dolphins adding a run in the sixth to extend its lead to three.

Ford was critical of the starting pitching performances commenting, “We battled back today, but we let them get away from us today. We keep digging ourselves a hole, and our starting pitchers just didn’t do what they needed to do today to keep us in it.”

Cornell showed signs of life in the seventh, closing the deficit to 7-5 on a run scoring, two-out triple by Rico, but LeMoyne closer Andy Weimer struck out senior catcher Javy Alfaro to ensure the sweep. Weimer recorded his fourth save on the year, preserving the victory for Dreschler. For the Red, Morris absorbed the loss, dropping his record on the year to 1-3.

LeMoyne’s sweep improved the MAAC conference leading Dolphins’ record to 22-10, while dropping the Red to a disappointing 10-25. The Red will look to put an end to its current eleven-game losing streak this weekend, when it plays host to Gehrig Division foe Columbia.

Archived article by Mark Fetzko