The Canisius baseball team opened a three-game series at Marist College with an 8-1 win over the Red Foxes at McCann Field on Saturday afternoon. The Golden Griffins improve to 26-14 overall and 9-4 in the MAAC and won their fourth straight game and for the sixth time in the last seven contests.
Junior Rohn Pierce (8-2) was dominant for the Griffs, throwing seven shutout innings. The right-hander yielded three hits, walked two and struck out two. Pierce only threw 80 pitches and allowed just three batters past first base. Senior Mike Tolsma allowed one run in two innings of relief.
Canisius jumped out to an early 4-0 lead in the second inning. The first five batters of the inning reached, starting with singles from senior Shane Zimmer and junior Connor Panas. After senior Jimmy Luppens was hit by a pitch, sophomore Brett Siddall worked a six-pitch walk to force home Zimmer. Junior Mike Krische went the opposite way with the next pitch, singling to right center to score Panas. Freshman Christ Conley sent a grounder to shortstop, which forced Krische and allowed Luppens to score. The throw to third in an attempt to get Siddall was errant, and Siddall scored the fourth run of the inning for the Griffs.
The Griffs broke the game open in the seventh, which started with a four-pitch, leadoff walk to Krische. After a sacrifice bunt from Conley advanced Krische to second, a single from sophomore Anthony Massicci scored Krische. Senior Jose Torralba and Zimmer walked to load the bases with two outs. Panas came through with the two-out, two-RBI single to make it 7-0 and chase Marist starter Jordan Eich.
Panas was 3-for-5 with three RBI while Krische reached base three times with a single and two walks. Torralba went 2-for-4 with two runs scored.
The second game of the series was postponed until Sunday due to impending rain. The teams will complete the series with a doubleheader on Sunday, with first pitch scheduled for 11 a.m.
Notes: Pierce has thrown at least seven innings in the last seven starts and didn’t allow a run for the third time in 2014... Pierce threw a first-pitch strike to 18 of 26 batters... The Griffs have not hit a home run in seven consecutive games, extending their longest drought of the season... Panas posted his team-high 15th multi-hit game of the season... Zimmer extended his streak of consecutive games reaching base to 16 games.