February 1, 2012
Baseball Takes 2012 Season Opener Over Mars Hill, 6-3
Dakota Irwin Clubbed A Pinch Hit Two RBI Single In The Eighth
Belmont Abbey senior designated hitter Matt Mazzolla broke a 3-3 tie with a sacrifice fly in the seventh, and Dakota Irwin ripped a two out, two run pinch hit single to close the scoring as the Crusaders earned a season opening win over the visiting Mars Hill Lions this afternoon.
The Abbey jumped ahead 1-0 in the first as Ian Vasquez led off with a double and scored on Gabby Amor's single to left. Mars Hill tied the score in the third, but the Crusaders jumped right back in front in the bottom of the inning on a two run homer to left by Kyle Buchanan.
The game remained scoreless until the top of the seventh when the Lions knotted the contest at three when Matt Mayo doubled home Coty Pate, who singled earlier. Wooten moved to third on Mayo's double scored the tying run on a wild pitch.
Belmont Abbey wasted no time moving back in front, as it seized the lead for good in the bottom of the frame. Justin Vasquez led off with a single and raced all the way to third on a failed pickoff attempt. Mazzolla brought him home with a deep fly ball to left to push the Crusaders ahead 4-3.
Mars Hill did not score in the eighth, and the Crusaders pushed their lead to 6-3 in the eighth, as Irwin clubbed a single back up the middle, scoring Amor and John Cucchiarella.
Down to its final three outs, the Lions put runners on first and second with nobody out. Emilio Pagan, who started at third base, came in to relieve Matt Parish, and coaxed a double play ground ball, and then recorded a strikeout to end the game.
Parish earned the win in an inning and a third of relief, allowing no runs on three hits, striking out a pair. Pagan picked up the save. Andy Runion was charged with the loss afer giving up the go-ahead run on Mazzolla's fly ball.Related Item: Box Score