BATAVIA - The Marist baseball team lost 3-2 to Niagara in 15 innings in a Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) game played at Genesee Community College on Monday. The teams were originally scheduled to play a doubleheader, but the second game was canceled.
Offensively, sophomore right fielder Jake Berry (South Hamilton, Mass.) and senior left fielder Eric Helmrich (Yonkers, N.Y.) each went 3-for-7 with a double. Both scored a run, and Helmrich had an RBI. Junior shortstop Zach Shank (Lititz, Pa.) went 2-for-6 with a double as the Red Foxes finished with 11 hits.
On the mound, junior right-hander Chris Bielak (Sayreville, N.J.) started and when the first 6.2 innings for Marist. Bielak allowed six hits and two runs, one of which was unearned. He struck out seven and walked just two. He was relieved by sophomore right-hander Kevin McCarthy (Malverne, N.Y.) who tossed three scoreless innings in his first appearance of the season. Senior right-hander Jake Rifkin (West Deptford, N.J.) took the loss, as he was charged with the winning run in the 15th. It was the only run he allowed in 4.2 innings of relief. Junior right-hander Brett Houseal (Landisville, Pa.) entered with one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the 15th, and allowed a single to Niagara second baseman Thomas Rodrigues, which ended the game.
After Niagara opened the scoring with a run in the first, Marist tied it in the top of the second. Helmrich led off with a single, and scored on a two-out base hit by red-shirt sophomore center fielder Mark Stuckey (Marietta, Pa.). The Red Foxes then took a 2-1 lead in the third as Berry reached on a one-out single, stole second with two away, and then scored on an RBI double by Helmrich.
Niagara tied the game in the sixth on a sacrifice fly by shortstop Jon Wilson, which scored first baseman Ryan McCauley. That was the last run that was scored until Rodrigues' game-winning single in the 15th. Marist had runners in the scoring position in the 8th, 11th, 12th, 14th and 15th innings. Niagara also had runners in scoring position in the 7th, 9th, 12th and 14th.
Marist fell to 7-14 overall and 2-3 in the MAAC; Niagara is now 10-13 overall and 2-3 in the MAAC.
The Red Foxes will now return to action with a non-conference game at Holy Cross on Wednesday at 5 p.m. Marist's non-conference at Stony Brook, originally scheduled for Tuesday, has been postponed. No makeup date has been announced at this time.