CENTER VALLEY, Pa. – The Ursinus College baseball team managed to makes things interesting after falling behind 11-0 in the second inning of Monday's non-conference slugfest at DeSales, falling one batter shy of bringing the tying run to the plate with a furious rally that ended in a 14-11 defeat.
Freshman Mike Stanziale had a career day at the plate, going 4-for-5 with a double and scoring three runs, while fellow rookie Alex Mumme connected on his first career home run for the Bears (20-8), who had 16 hits just two days removed from a 22-hit outburst against Gettysburg. Four players racked up at least three knocks for the Bulldogs (15-12), who scored nine times in the second to provide a massive cushion that proved just large enough against a relentless Ursinus attack.
After scoring twice in the home half of the first, DeSales went wild in the next frame, sending 14 men to the plate in a nine-run outburst.
Senior Alex Campbell put the Bears on the board with an RBI single in the top of the third, and the visitors struck for four more in the fourth. Mumme led off with a blast to left center before senior Tyler Strano singled and Stanziale doubled, and a fielding error by the Bulldogs shortstop allowed both to score. Another miscue put senior Greg Petorak in scoring position for Campbell to drive him in with a fielder's choice and cut the deficit to 11-5.
DeSales tacked on two more runs to expand its lead, but Ursinus plated three in the seventh. Mumme and Strano again got things going with back-to-back singles, and RBI singles by Stanziale and Petorak kept the line moving before freshman Dom Fiorentino capped the frame with a run-scoring groundout.
The Bears made one last stand in the ninth. Trailing 14-8, Stanziale and senior Vincent Terry singled in front of freshman Brian Varani, who walked to load the bases with no outs. An RBI groundout by senior CJ Diana preceded a two-out, two-run single by classmate Kieran Geyer, which put the tying run in the on-deck circle. A groundout finally ended Ursinus' hopes of completing a remarkable comeback.
Senior Brandon Weidenfeld stabilized the pitching staff with a strong long relief outing, allowing one earned run on five hits with three strikeouts in 4.1 innings. Freshman Ben Kerns permitted one run in two innings.
Strano was 2-for-3 and scored twice, while Fiorentino also had two hits. Petorak finished with two RBI.
The baseball team opens a home-and-home doubleheader with Swathmore at Thomas Field on Tuesday.