Guilford College Baseball 14, Tufts 13 (11 inn.)

Greensboro, N.C. (3-17-08) – Byron Myers’ single down the right-field line scored pinch-runner Mike Braverman from second base to give Guilford College a 14-13 nonconference baseball win over Tufts University Monday afternoon at Edgar McBane Field. The victory marked Guilford’s (12-11) fourth straight comeback win in three days and capped a stretch of nine games in nine days.

Guilford took an 8-1 lead after three innings, only to see the Jumbos (1-3) chip away at the lead and pull to within 8-7 thanks to a five-run sixth inning. Tufts sent nine batters to the plate in the frame and got run-scoring singles from Eric Catalanotti and pinch-hitter Ari David.

The Quakers answered in the bottom half of the sixth inning thanks to a three-run triple by sophomore catcher Jason Flud. The Jumbos continued their comeback as David delivered another RBI hit in the top of the seventh to make it an 11-8 contest.

Guilford’s Paul Keenan worked through the eighth inning before handing the ball off to Michael Costa in the top of the ninth. The sidewinding junior yielded two singles before hitting Catalanotti to load the bases. David followed with a one-out walk that made the score 11-9. Pinch-hitter Corey Pontes tied the game with a two-run single to left. Tim Lucas replaced Costa and got Dave Katzman to hit into the Jumbos’ fourth double play of the game.

After Jordan Goldberg held the Quakers scoreless in the bottom of the ninth, Tufts took a 13-11 lead in the 10th on David Lereche’s bases-loaded single to left that scored two runs. Tufts’ Jack Dilday retired the first two batters in the bottom of the 10th before Flud walked and took third on pinch-hitter John Goodwin’s double. Drew Ward walked to load the bases, which brought reserve outfielder Jordan Nelson to the plate for his first at-bat of the game. The freshman was two-for-20 in 12 prior appearances, but delivered an opposite-field single to right that tied the game at 11-11.

Guilford’s Drew Gurkin started in the 11th on the mound and walked the bases loaded around a fielder’s choice groundout by Katzman. Guilford coach Nick Black called for his seventh pitcher of the day, sophomore ace Ryan Hairston, who threw a nine-inning five-hitter on Saturday. Nate Bankoff hit into a fielder’s choice grounder to third that forced Katzman at the plate for the innings second out. Hairston got out of the jam by retiring cleanup hitter Steve Ragonese on a grounder to second. Guilford second baseman Drew Ward fielded the ball in the hole and his throw just beat Ragonese’s head-first slide into the bag.

The Quakers banged out 18 hits one day after gathering a season-best 20 hits in a 9-6 win over Purchase College. Myers and Alex Starbuck had three hits apiece, while Flud added two hits and three RBIs. Starbuck and Myers both plated two runners.

Tufts also had 18 hits and was led by Ian Goldberg’s three hits, which included a leadoff homer in the first. He and David both finished with three RBIs.

The Quakers get some much needed time off before returning to Old Dominion Athletic Conference play Saturday (3/22) at Hampden-Sydney College. The Jumbos, who defeated Purchase earlier in the day on Guilford’s McBane Field, 14-10, play Greensboro College in NewBridge Bank Park Tuesday (3/18) at 7:00 p.m.

Guilford 14, Tufts 13 (Mar 17, 2008 at Greensboro, N.C.)
Tufts…………… 100 015 103 20 – 13 18 5 (1-3)
Guilford………… 323 003 000 21 – 14 18 1 (12-11)
Pitchers: Tufts – Pat O’Donnell; Ed Bernstein(6); Jordan Goldberg(7); Jack Dilday(10); Jesse Shapiro(10). Guilford – Reid MacLean; Andrew McClannon(6); Paul Keenan(6); Michael Costa(9); Tim Lucas(9); Drew Gurkin(11); Ryan Hairston(11).
Win-Ryan Hairston(4-3) Loss-Jesse Shapiro(0-1) T-3:30 A-50
HR TUF – Ian Goldberg.
Game notes: Byron Myers’ 1-out single in the bottom of the 11th scored pinch-runner Mike Braverman from 2nd and gave GC its 4th straight win. TU rallied from an 8-1 deficit. Cory Pontes’ 2-run single in the 9th tied the game at 8. TU went ahead 13-11 in the 10th. Jordan Nelson’s 2-out, 2-run single retied it McClannon faced 3 batters in the 6th.
Game: GCB-23