After falling 1-0 on an unearned run in the bottom of the ninth inning against Oakland, the Canisius College baseball team bounced back and earned a split of the doubleheader with a 9-5 win over the University of Dayton in 12 innings on Saturday. With the split, Canisius is now 9-11 on the season.
Oakland 1, Canisius 0
Canisius was held without a hit until the seventh inning as Oakland starter Hayden Fox had a no-hitter through 6.2 innings. Sophomore Shane Zimmer broke up the no-hitter with two outs in the seventh after senior Drew Pettit reached on an error, but Canisius couldn't capitalize. The Griffs had a chance to tie the game in the ninth when junior Chris Gruarin drew a one-out walk and Pettit followed with a single. Gruarin got to third base, but was then thrown out in a rundown for the final out of the inning.
Sophomore Garrett Cortright (2-3) ended up with a loss despite an impressive pitching performance. In the ninth, Mike Carson led off the inning and reached on a throwing error by sophomore Ronnie Bernick and advanced to second on the play. After a sacrifice bunt advanced Carson to third base, Spencer Marentette drove Carson home with a single through the left side for the 1-0 walk-off win.
Cortright allowed three hits and one walk while striking out seven in 8.1 innings of work.
Canisius 9, Dayton 5 - 12 Innings
Canisius built a 5-0 lead, only to see the host Flyers chip away with five runs over a span of four innings, forcing extra innings with one run in the bottom of the ninth. The Griffs took advantage a couple of Dayton mistakes to take a 4-0 lead in the second. Pettit reached on an error after dropping down a bunt, but was replaced by Zimmer after a fielder's choice. Zimmer advanced to second after a balk and freshman Jesse Puscheck reached on a walk. Both baserunners moved up after a wild pitch and a walk to freshman Mike Booth loaded the bases. Sophomore Jesse Kelso scored two runs with a single. After a sacrifice bunt from Ryan Coppinger moved the two runners to second and third, Bernick followed with a two-out, two-RBI single to give Canisius the 4-0 lead. The Griffs pushed their lead to 5-0 in the sixth when Zimmer led off with a single, moved to second on a wild pitch and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt. Pinch runner Mike Krische scored on an RBI single from Booth.
The Flyers climbed back into the game with two runs in the sixth, one in the seventh and one in the eighth to make it 5-4 going to the ninth. Sophomore Jon Fitzsimmons replaced freshman Devon Stewart looking for his sixth save of the season. Bobby Glover reached with a one-out single, stole second and moved to third on an errant throw from junior Brooklyn Foster. A.J. Ryan scored Glover with a one-out RBI single to tie the game.
Canisius took control in extra innings with four runs in the top of the 12th. Bernick started the rally with a one-out single. Sophomore Jose Torralba walked and Gruarin was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Pettit followed with a sacrifice fly to put Canisius ahead 6-5. Sophomore Jimmy Luppens would reach on an error that scored Torralba. Freshman Connor Panas followed with a two-RBI double to give Canisius the four-run lead.
Stewart went eight innings, allowing four runs, three earned. Fitzsimmons (1-0) earned his first career win by not allowing a run in the three extra innings.
Canisius concludes its Spring Break trip on Sunday, with a single, nine-inning game against Dayton. First pitch at Time Warner Cable Stadium is set for 11 a.m.
Notes: Canisius improves to 3-0 in extra-inning games this season... The Griffs have dropped their last five one-run games... Fitzsimmons had been perfect in his first five save opportunities of the 2012 season... Zimmer reached base in both games and has now reached base in 27 straight games... Booth had the first multi-hit game of his career... The 8.1 innings pitched by Cortright were a career high (7.2 innings against Creighton on Feb. 20, 2011). The seven strikeouts matched a career high... Fitzsimmons has 10 strikeouts in 7.2 innings pitched this season... Foster saw his eight-game hitting streak end in the game against Dayton... The eight innings pitched for Stewart were a career high. Canisius won for the first time in Stewart's five starts... Bernick reached base in five of his seven plate appearances.