SELINSGROVE, Pa. – After dropping a nail-biting game one to Scranton, the Susquehanna baseball team bounced back in game two to split with the Royals on Saturday afternoon.
The Crusaders (18-8, 8-3 Landmark) fell 8-7 in the opener before junior Casey Hood (Shrewsbury, Pa. / Susquehannock) threw a gem in the second game that SU won 6-1.
Hood only needed 81 pitches for the complete game as the southpaw scattered two hits, issued just one walk and struck out six. In fact, Hood had a no-hitter through six innings, and surrendered the only Royal hits in the top of the seventh, as the lefty earned his sixth win of the year.
SU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead as Ty Raubenstine (Elizabethville, Pa. / Upper Dauphin Area) led off with a walk and later scored on an RBI groundout by Dylan Glassmire (Doylestown, Pa. / Central Bucks South).
The Orange & Maroon plated three runs on three doubles in the third to add to their lead. Raubenstine cracked a run-scoring double to left center, plating Nick Kennedy (Brookeville, Md. / Good Council) and Glassmire followed with an RBI double to right center. Junior Mike Rucereto (Washington Twp., N.J. / Bergen Catholic) blasted a run-scoring two-bagger to left center to complete the scoring for the Crusaders as SU took a 4-0 lead.
The Crusaders tacked on two more insurance runs in the fourth and sixth innings, respectively. Raubenstine connected for an RBI single to left and Taylor Luckenbill (Pottsville, Pa. / Nativity BVM) drove in a run with a single up the middle to complete to offense for SU.
Hood entered the top of the seventh with the no-hitter intact, but unfortunately gave up back-to-back base knocks to right field. The Royals (8-9, 3-5 Landmark) ruined the shutout bid on a sacrifice fly, but the next batter hit into a fielder’s choice to end the contest.
Raubenstine, Kennedy and Rob Marcickiewicz (Red Bank, N.J. / Middletown South) all had two hits apiece with Marcickiewicz scoring a game-high three runs.
In the opener, a last-inning comeback attempt fell just short with SU falling 8-7, despite rallying from a four-run deficit.
With bases loaded and no outs, the Crusaders tacked on a run as Kyle Semmel (Burlington Twp., N.J. / Holy Cross) was hit by a pitch. Freshman Dylan Jenkins (Glen Mills, Pa. / Bayard Rustin) drove in a pair with a single to left center to cut the Scranton lead to 8-7. But the SU rally fell just short as the Royals closer earned the save in game one.
SU fell behind early, 1-0, but answered with two runs in the first as Raubenstine scored on a wild pitch and Jenkins picked up an RBI single to center.
But Scranton pounced on the Crusaders in the second, with Ross Danzig accounting for a grand slam over the right field fence to put SU in a 5-2 hole. The Royals tacked on another run in the fourth to add to their lead, 6-2.
Susquehanna cut the Scranton lead in half, 6-3, thanks to a sacrifice fly by Jared Musilli (Branchville, N.J. / High Point Regional) in the fourth. Bryan Palsi (Brielle, N.J. / Manasquan) cracked a double to right center in the fifth and eventually scored on an RBI single by Semmel, with the Crusaders inching closer, 6-4.
Junior Luc Kocher (Middlebury Center, Pa. / Elkland) suffered the defeat as the righty threw 5.2 innings, striking out seven and giving up two earned runs. A.J. Pinto (Bronxville, N.Y. / Fordham Prep) and Liam Conboy (Old Tappan, N.J. / Northern Valley Regional) both appeared in relief.
SU and Scranton close out the series tomorrow, with a nine-inning contest starting at 12 p.m.