CSI BASEBALL HOLDS OFF LEHMAN, 9-5

CSI's Joe Cassano went 2-3 with two RBI and a run scored in the win over Lehman

The College of Staten Island men’s baseball squad de it a perfect three-for-three against Lehman College this season, putting away the Lightning today by a 9-5 final in a single, non-conference, affair this afternoon at the CSI Baseball Complex.  CSI upped their record to 9-10 overall on the season, while Lehman fell to 5-4.

It was a back-and-forth affair most of the way during the windy and chilly afternoon, as starters Casey Mulligan (CSI) and Freddy Parra (LC) struggled to find the strike zone and key errors played a role in the early innings.  CSI took a quick, 2-0, lead after a single frame, without the benefits of a hit.  Luis Ortiz walked to start the frame and advanced to second after a Parra throwing error on a would-be sac bunt by Henry Roman.  Ortiz then scored on a passed ball, and Roman followed on a wild pitch.

A run in the second and third frame got Lehman even, 2-2, after two and a half frames.  A Jeremy Perez RBI-single did the honors in the second inning, while a fielder’s choice RBI by Stephen Valdes would score Michael Liang in the third.  CSI, however, erupted for three runs in their turn of the third, aided by another Lehman error, and punctuated by a Joe Cassano two-RBI double.

Lehman refused to quit, scoring another pair of runs in the fourth, chasing Mulligan in favor of Dominic Casella, who became the pitcher of record.  A key Dan Lynch error in the outfield helped LC score the first run, and later, Socrates Peralta would score on a wild pitch.

Against Wilfredo Gonzalez, who pitched admirably in relief for the Lightning, CSI was able to muster an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth, when Lynch laced an RBI bunt-hit down the first-base side to score Cassano.  Casella, however, yielded a run in Lehman’s turn of the seventh inning, on an Onix Mejia fielder’s-choice RBI that score Liang, who began the inning reaching via an error.

Nursing a 6-5 lead, CSI got some breathing room with a three-run burst in the bottom of the eighth inning off of Lehman reliever Stephen Valdes.  A Brian Moreno double highlighted the frame, and another Lehman error, part of five on the day for the visitors, allowed another run.  The lead proved more than enough for CSI reliever Nick Amatucci, who pitched two innings of masterful relief, allowing no hits in two innings while fanning three.

After dropping seven straight, CSI has now three straight, and improved their winning streak over Lehman to 14 games spanning back to 2008.  The Dolphins are next in action on Tuesday, hosting SUNY-Purchase for a single game at 4pm as part of non-conference play.

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