After a long Ithaca winter, the baseball team hoped that a trip to Philadelphia for its opening weekend would bring nicer weather.
However, this wasn’t the case, as the team battled through inclement weather all weekend, rearranging its schedule in the process.
Instead of playing LaSalle on Friday and Sunday, and Villanova on Saturday as originally scheduled, the squad faced LaSalle on Friday and then played a doubleheader against Villanova on Sunday due to Saturday’s rainout.
“It was actually better for us,” said senior co-captain Dan Parant about the scheduling change. “We got a chance to play against in real tough Big East team, Villanova, and came away with a win against them on Sunday.”
The Red wasn’t as fortunate on Friday, as it dropped its season opener to LaSalle, 8-7, despite 10 hits. Sophomore Michael Weiss led the offensive charge, going 3-4 and scoring two runs. Parant chipped in with two runs batted in, as did sophomore Matt Goodson, who was 2-4 at the plate. Junior Matt Miller, who went 2-5 with a run scored, also drove in a run in the loss.
The Red split Sunday’s doubleheader with the Wildcats, losing the first game by a 4-2 score and winning the second, 3-2.
Senior Ned VanAllan had a run-scoring double in the top of the first inning to get things going for the Red in the second game. Freshman Kaleb Hutchinson drove in the Red’s second run in the fourth on an infield single, scoring VanAllan.
The hit that sealed the victory for the Red was senior co-captain Jon Finch’s leadoff ninth inning home run to break a 2-2 tie. The hit was Finch’s only of the game and just the Red’s eighth.
Senior Luke Staskal gave up just three hits to Villanova in six innings of work, striking out six in his first start of the season.
Earning the victory for the Red was junior Conor Kelly, who pitched a scoreless 1 2/3 innings — giving up just one hit in the process — to earn the victory.
The pitching for Cornell was solid in the first game of the doubleheader, but it wasn’t enough, as the Red managed just three hits in its 4-2 loss.
Sophomore Rocky Collis suffered the loss, giving up six hits and four runs in four innings.
Classmate Seth Gordon drove in both of the Red’s runs with a two-run double in the seventh.
Unfortunately for the Red, Gordon’s hit was its only extra-base knock of the game.
“We played really solid defense all weekend, and we expect the pitching to be there all year,” Parant said of the loss. “It’s just a matter of if the bats will come around for us.”
The Red offense will try to come alive when the team journeys back to Philadelphia for a rematch with Villanova and a contest with St. Joseph’s next weekend.
Archived article by Chris Mascaro