Baseball Struggles in Season Opener

Baseball Struggles in Season Opener

FORT PIERCE, Fla. – The Susquehanna baseball team did not open its season as it had hoped, dropping a doubleheader to Immaculata. SU fell 4-2 in the opener and lost and 3-1 decision in the second game.

In the opening game, the Crusaders (0-2) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning and it remained 2-0 until the seventh inning when Immaculata tied the game and proceeded to go ahead with two ninth-inning runs.

For SU, Justin Cassinelli (Valhalla, N.Y./Valhalla/SUNY Westchester CC) was 3-for-4 and Zach Leone (Pelham, N.Y./Fordham Prep/University of Massachusetts) added two hits.

Senior Spencer Hotaling (Selinsgrove, Pa./Selinsgrove Area) tossed the first six innings and gave up just one earned run with five strikeouts and only one walk. Unfortunately, the Susquehanna bullpen surrendered three runs in three innings of work.

In the bottom of the first, Cassinelli drove in the first run on a single to left center and two batters later, Leone followed with a double to left field that scored Bryan Palsi (Brielle, N.J./Manasquan) who had reached on a fielder's choice.

It stood 2-0 until the top of the seventh when Mike Lascomb led off the inning with a double and later scored on a wild pitch. The tying run came around to score on a Leone throwing error.

With the game still tied at two in the top of the ninth, an Adam Connor sac fly scored the go-ahead run and Connor Kerns' two-out single to left field allowed Immaculata to score an insurance run.

Leone led off the bottom of the ninth with a single, followed by a Dylan Glassmire (Doylestown, Pa./Central Bucks South) walk. Unfortunately, both runners were left stranded to end the game 4-2 in favor of the Mighty Macs.

In game two, Matt Cassinelli (Valhalla, N.Y./Valhalla/SUNY Westchester CC) and Glassmire had two hits apiece to account for four of SU's six hits in the contest. Pitcher Bobby Wittemann (Warrington, Pa./Central Bucks South) tossed all six innings and gave up three runs – two earned – and surrendered just one walk but came away with the loss.

Immaculata jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second before the Crusaders tied it in the fourth on Leon's RBI double down the left field line that scored Palsi.

The game remained tied until the bottom of the sixth when Wittemann surrendered a RBI single to Ryan Tecco to make it 2-1. Kerns followed with a RBI double to left center for a 3-1 Might Macs lead.

Glassmire came through with a double-out double in the seventh but Tom Shields (Chalfont, Pa./Central Bucks South) popped up to end the game.

SU returns to action on Monday with a 10 a.m. game against Kenyon.