BUIES CREEK, N.C. -- The Marist baseball team split a doubleheader against Campbell on Saturday. The Red Foxes won the first game 7-5, but a valiant comeback fell just short in the second game as they lost 9-8.
In the first game, the Red Foxes scored twice in the top of the ninth to break a 5-5 tie. Junior shortstop Zach Shank (Lititz, Pa.) had the hit the broke the deadlock, an RBI single which plated sophomore third baseman Nick McQuail (Wantagh, N.Y.). Senior right-hander Jake Rifkin (West Deptford, N.J.) pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth to earn the victory.
Freshman catcher Mark Brennan (Wallingford, Conn.) hit a two-run homer in his first collegiate at-bat in the second inning, and added a two-run double in the eighth.
Marist finished with 12 hits. Junior first baseman Mike Orefice (Wappingers Falls, N.Y.) went 3-for-5 with a double, RBI and run scored. Brennan, McQuail and Shank each had two hits apiece. Junior right-hander Brett Houseal (Hempfield, Pa.) started for the Red Foxes, and allowed just two runs and five hits in six innings. He walked three and struck out three.
In game two, Marist trailed 9-4 entering its half of the ninth. A two-run double by red-shirt junior catcher Ben Luderer (River Vale, N.J.), followed by a two-run single by sophomore right fielder Pat Welsh (Millersville, Pa.) brought the Red Foxes to within one, but they came no closer.
Welsh had a team-high three hits for the Red Foxes. Luderer, McQuail and freshman second baseman Alec Petrone (Mahopac, N.Y.) had two apiece.
Junior lefty Dan Zlotnick (Katonah, N.Y.) started for the Red Foxes and allowed two runs over five innings. Freshman righty Brandon Dolan (Franklin Park, N.J.) took the loss in relief. The Red Foxes received two scoreless innings from freshman southpaw Rich Vrana (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) in his first collegiate appearance.
Jake Kirkland and Kyle Holmstrom had three hits apiece for Campbell in the second game. Andrew Jacobsen pitched five innings out of the bullpen to pick up the victory.
Marist now stands at 1-2 overall. The Red Foxes will have next weekend off, but will return to action with a three-game series at Old Dominion. The teams will play single games on March 2, 3 and 4.