ARLINGTON, Va. – A battle until the final out saw the Marymount baseball team come up just short to Salisbury University on Thursday afternoon, 7-6, in a Capital Athletic Conference nine-inning matchup at Bishop O'Connell High School.
The Saints (12-11, 4-3 CAC) put across the first run in the second inning on a wild pitch that scored freshman Casey Baker, while starting pitcher Kenny Sysyn only allowed one base runner and no hits through three innings.
The early 1-0 advantage dissipated in the top of the fourth when the Sea Gulls (16-7, 5-2 CAC) worked the bases loaded with a double to left centerfield and two hit by pitches by Sysyn. The next two batters were walked, each scoring a run to take the 2-1 lead.
Sysyn, through the jam, still maneuvered two strikeouts, but the back-to-back bases-loaded walks ended his day on the mound. Junior Patrick Berthelette came in for relief, striking out Salisbury's Justin Meekins to leave three Sea Gulls stranded and send the game to the bottom half of the fourth.
Junior Conner Hall opened the bottom half with a single to right field before a balk moved him to second two batters later. Senior Javier Herrera followed up with a shot to right center, bringing Hall around third and home to knot the score up at 2-2.
The top of the fifth was still Berthelette's work. Even though two of the three outs were strikeouts, a sacrifice fly on the second out brought in the run that would give Salisbury the final lead of the game.
In the sixth inning, freshman Drew Mead and Hall handled the duties on the mound, but three runs came around on three hits to take a 6-2 advantage. However, the Saints answered with three runs of their own in the bottom half of the frame draw within one.
With runners on first and second, Baker sent a single to right field to score senior Kaden Darrow from second. Two batters later, Baker stole third, and eventually stole home when junior Ryan Scheufele bolted to second base. As the Salisbury catcher threw to second to attempt the tag on Scheufele, Baker sprinted home, inevitably both reaching safely. A throwing error on a Herrera shot to third base brought in Scheufele for the final run in the sixth.
Hall continued on the hill in the seventh, allowing one run on two hits, as that was the final run in the game for the Sea Gulls.
There was no more scoring for either team until the bottom of the ninth, seeing Scheufele move from second base to the mound for scoreless eighth and ninth innings against the Sea Gulls. His two innings of work, he fanned four batters and allowed three hits. For the season, he has made 10 appearances for 16 innings, totaling 14 strikeouts and hasn't allowed a single run for a perfect 0.00 earned-run average.
Trailing by two, the Saints cut the deficit by one with a rip up the middle by junior Cal Berman to score Baker. Unfortunately, the third and final out of the game came on a steal attempt at third to close the game at 7-6 in favor of the Sea Gulls.
Baker led the MU offense for the day with three runs and a RBI on 3-for-4 at the plate. He also had two stolen bases. He is on a five-game hit streak with four of those games having multiple.
Marymount returns to action on Sunday, April 8, traveling to No. 7 Christopher Newport for a nine-inning twin bill. Game one is set to begin at 12 p.m.