April 25, 2013

BASEBALL | Niners Take Loss, Look Ahead to Princeton

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The baseball team is looking to grab some wins as it prepares to head into the Ivy League Championships. The team’s latest game, a 6-5 nonleague loss to Binghamton on Wednesday, put the team on a sour note, but the Red is ready to bounce back for an upcoming four-game series against Princeton.“The Binghamton game went pretty well I thought. We didn’t swing the bats as well as we wanted to, but we kept battling,” sophomore Kevin Tatum said. “Our pitchers pitched well and kept us close. We battled in the last inning down by one with runners in scoring position and just got unlucky.”Junior Ryan Plantier was 2-for-3 with a three-run home run, but the team could not close to grab the win away from the Bearcats.“Ryan Plantier had a big game with a three run bomb and another hit,” Tatum said.Cornell’s first hit gave the team a 4-0 lead in the second inning when Plantier’s blast went over the field in left. The home run for Plantier was only his second of the season — Tatum also has two for the year, while junior Chris Cruz leads the team with three. Binghamton came back in the third when Zach Blanden hit a two-run homer. Sophomore J.D. Whetsel answered back for the Red in the top of the fifth inning when he stole third — he leads the team with 17 stolen bases — and then scored on a fielding error to give Cornell another run.The Bearcats took their first and only lead of the day in the bottom half of the fifth inning, however, with all four runs due to errors from the Cornell infield. The Red tried to come back in the ninth with junior pinch-hitter Ben Swinford leading with a single and advancing to second thanks to a sac bunt from Plantier. After Cruz got up and was hit by a pitch, the two players moved into scoring position due to a groundout. However, a line drive snagged by the Bearcat’s left fielder ended the Red’s chances of coming back to take the “W.”The Red will play Princeton in two doubleheaders this weekend. The two games on Friday will be at Princeton with a noon start time and the second two games will be at noon on Sunday at home at Hoy Field. This weekend’s series ends the regular season and sets up the Ivy League Tournament.“This is a huge series. We are going to go in there and play our game,” Tatum said. “To have a shot, we have to take at least three, but taking four would be ideal. They are in the same position as us, so it’s going to be a battle.”The Tigers are 12-26 overall, but 9-7 in the Ivy League. Though Princeton claimed victories in three of four games against the Red last season, the Red’s one win against the Tigers gave Cornell the Gehrig Division title.

Original Author: Haley Velasco