The Canisius baseball team dropped a doubleheader at Rider University on Saturday afternoon. The Golden Griffins lost 4-3 and 10-7, seeing their six-game winning streak and nine-game road winning streak come to an end. With the two losses, Canisius falls to 20-9 overall and 4-4 in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.
Game One – Rider 4, Canisius 3
Junior Garrett Cortright pitched out of trouble in the first two innings as Rider stranded a baserunner in scoring position in each inning. The Griffs scored the first run of the game in the third, getting back-to-back one-out singles from sophomore Mike Krische and senior Christian Segar. After Krische was picked off at second base for the second out of the inning, junior Jesse Kelso scored Segar with a two-out RBI double. Canisius extended its lead to 3-0, mounting a two-out rally in the fourth. Sophomore Connor Panas singled and junior Jose Torralba followed with a two-out walk. Junior Ronnie Bernick doubled to left center to score both baserunners and put Canisius up by three.
Cortright retired 11 consecutive batters before hitting Eric Strano with one out in the sixth. Rider then put together four straight one-out hits to score four runs and take the lead. Jerry Mulderig doubled with one out to put two runners in scoring position while an infield single from Adam Wayman scored Strano and put runners at the corners. Nick Crescenzo singled to right to score Mulderig and advanced to second on an error by Segar. Justin Thomas then singled to right to score both runners and put Rider up 4-3.
The Griffs threatened in the eighth and ninth innings, as Kelso led off the eighth with a single and a one-out double from senior Brooklyn Foster put two runners in scoring position. Rider starter Tyler Smith got junior Shane Zimmer to line out to short and Panas to fly out to right to end the threat. In the ninth, Torralba drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt from Bernick. Krische would beat out an infield single to get two runners on with one out. Rider closer Zach Mawson got Segar to ground out to short, which advanced the runners into scoring position, but Kelso to ground out to first to end the game.
Cortright (6-2) allowed four runs, three earned, and seven hits, walked one and struck out five in eight innings. Smith (5-2) gave up three runs on a season-high 10 hits, walked one and struck out three. Mawson earned his league-best sixth save of the season.
Game Two – Rider 10, Canisius 7
Rider (15-12, 4-1 MAAC) scored the first five runs of the game, all coming with two outs. Crescenzo and Ian Lindsay had two-out RBI singles in the first, Strano had a two-out RBI single in the second and Thomas had a two-out, two-RBI double in the third to put the Broncs up 5-0.
Canisius battled back in the fourth, scoring four runs on just two hits. Sophomore Jesse Puscheck led off with a single and Torralba drew a one-out walk. Bernick reached on a fielder’s choice, with an error scoring Puscheck and putting two runners in scoring position. Junior Ryan Coppinger worked a one-out walk and after freshman Brett Siddall struck out, junior Jimmy Luppens came through with the bases-clearing double to make it 5-4. Rider matched those four runs with four runs of their own in the bottom of the fourth, regaining the five-run lead. The Broncs added another run in the sixth before Canisius attempted to rally in the seventh. Freshman Anthony Massicci had a pinch-hit RBI double, Bernick had an RBI groundout and Segar reached on a error that allowed Massicci to score and make it 10-7. Chris Taylor got Siddall to ground out to end the game.
Stewart (2-4) took the loss for the Griffs, allowing seven runs on nine hits in three innings. Sophomore Aaron Casper allowed one run in 2.2 innings of relief.
Canisius and Rider conclude the three-game series on Sunday, with first pitch set for noon.
Game Notes: Canisius out-hit Rider 11-7 in the first game and lost for the first time this season (18-1) when out-hitting the opponent… Canisius scored seven runs in the second game and fell to 18-2 this season when scoring six or more runs… Canisius loses a series to Rider for the second time in the last seven seasons… The three-inning start for Stewart (23 career starts) was the shortest of his career...Bernick extended his hitting streak to a season-best six games while Kelso now has a five-game hitting streak… Segar has multiple hits in seven of his last nine starts… Siddall also extended his hitting streak to five games… Torralba had three walks in the doubleheader after entering the day with three walks on the year (86 at-bats)... Canisius went 5-for-24 with runners in scoring position while Rider went 11-for-25.