SANFORD, Fla.- The Brandeis University baseball team split a double-header today at the University Athletic Association (UAA) Tournament in Historic Sanford Park. The Judges avenged a loss to Washington University in St. Louis with a thrilling ninth inning rally before falling to Emory University later in the day. Brandeis moves to 6-6 on the season, 2-4 in the UAA. The Bears fall to 3-7, 2-4 UAA, while the Eagles improve to 14-6, 5-1 UAA.
In their first contest of the day against WashU, the Judges were locked in a pitchers' duel. After eight innings, the squads were deadlocked at 1-1. The Bears had broken through first in the bottom of the third inning on an RBI groundout by junior 3B Chris Lowery (Randolph, N.J./Randolph) off senior starter Brian Ing (Sandwich, Mass./Sandwich). Brandeis threatened to tie the score twice before knotting it up in the seventh. In the top of the fourth, junior DH Tom McCarthy (Yonkers, N.Y./Fieldston School) was thrown out attempting to turn a fly ball to left field off the bat of senior catcher Dan Gad (Mansfield, Mass./Mansfield) into a sacrifice fly. The Judges had a runner on third once more in the sixth but a failed suicide squeeze resulted in sophomore LF Sam Miller (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury) getting tagged out at home. Finally, Brandeis broke through in the seventh on a fielder's choice that allowed McCarthy to cross the plate.
The real action began in the ninth inning. After junior starter Kunal Patel (Los Angeles, Calif./Windward) stifled the Judges over 7.1 brilliant innings, Brandeis was able to do their damage off of rookie reliever Brad Margolin (Northbrook, Ill./Glenbrook North). McCarthy led off the ninth with a single and was promptly replaced by rookie pinch runner Ryan Tettemer (Westfield, Mass./Suffield Acad.). After a fly out, the Judges loaded the bases on a single by Gad and a muffed fielder's choice by the second baseman that had everyone safe. Next up was junior 2B Rob Trenk (West Orange, N.J./West Orange). 0-for-3 up to that point, Trenk came through in the clutch, ripping a single past the diving third baseman to bring Tettmer and Gad home for the 3-1 lead. Brandeis wasn't done yet as, after a wild pitch and strikeout, Miller tacked on two very important insurance runs with a two RBI base knock of his own, scoring sophomore 3B Greg Heineman (Wilbraham, Mass./Minnechaug Reg.) and Trenk for his first collegiate hit and RBI.
With a stunning turnaround and pitching with a lead for the first time all contest, Ing stepped to the rubber looking to wrap up a complete game victory. However, a double, single, and walk saw the bases loaded with no outs and forced Ing from the game. Junior reliever Elio Fernandez (Bronx, N.Y./Fordham Prep) entered the game next and promptly got the first batter he faced to fly out. A fielder's choice made it a 5-2 ball game but resulted in the second out of the inning. An RBI single by junior SS Andrew Goldstick (Deerfield, Ill./Deerfield) made things a little closer as he made it 5-3. Finally, two batters later with the bases loaded, Fernandez got a fly out to left field to lock up the 5-3 victory for the Judges.
The story of the game was a superb effort by Ing. He hurled eight innings of one-run ball, walking one and giving up eight hits before pitching to three batters in the ninth and getting charged with two more earned runs. Ing's final stat line of eight innings, 10 hits, and three earned runs was excellent nonetheless as he earned his first win since his rookie campaign. Fernandez was credited with his first save of the season while giving up a hit and a walk.
On the offensive side, McCarthy led Brandeis with a 4-for-4 afternoon, including a run scored, while Trenk and Miller each had two RBI.
In the backend of their double-header, the Judges took on Emory. This contest was a different story as both squads got on the board early and often. The Eagles carried a 3-0 advantage into the third inning before Brandeis got two runs back in the bottom half. Senior SS Dominic Schwartz (San Francisco, Calif./Lowell) led off with a double and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt. Two batters later, Trenk cranked an RBI double into the right-center field gap to bring Schwartz home. McCarthy continued the two out rally with a single to the second baseman who then made a throwing error that allowed Trenk to cross the plate and cut the deficit to 3-2.
Emory would tack another run on in the fourth inning and would break the game open with a four-spot in the sixth that chased junior starter Brent Edmunds (North Hampton, N.H./Winnacunnet) from the contest.
Brandeis added two runs in both the seventh and eighth innings as they attempted to rally back into the game but the Judges would ultimately fall, 10-6.
The Eagles scored their 10 runs on 12 hits as seven different players racked up an RBI. They were led by junior CF Wes Peacock (Sherman Oaks, Calif./Harvard-Westlake) who went 3-for-5 with two runs and an RBI and senior DH Daniel Iturrey (Miami, Fla./Miami Palmetto) who was 2-for-4 with two RBI, a run scored, and a walk.
Rookie middle reliever Kyle Monk (Cortlandt Manor, N.Y./Hendrick Hudson) improved to 1-0 on the season for Emory with two scoreless innings while Edmunds fell to 1-2 after 5.2 innings, allowing eight runs (six earned) and conceding five free passes.
The Judges face off against Rochester tomorrow with first pitch at 11:00 a.m.