POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. – Buoyed by an eight-run first inning, the Marist baseball team defeated Iona 10-1 in the rubber game of a three-game Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) series at McCann Field on Sunday.
Marist finished with 15 hits in the game, all of which were singles. Freshman center fielder Matt Pagano (Cranston, R.I.), junior right fielder Jake Berry (South Hamilton, Mass.) and freshman second baseman Joey Aiola (Suffern, N.Y.) all went 3-for-4. Senior shortstop Zach Shank (Lititz, Pa.) and sophomore left fielder Steve Laurino (Carle Place, N.Y.) both went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored.
Sophomore left-hander Rich Vrana (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) improved to 4-1 with the victory. Vrana started and went the first six innings, recording seven strikeouts. He scattered seven hits and two walks, and allowed just one run. Junior right-hander Kevin McCarthy (Malverne, N.Y.) tossed the final three innings to earn his sixth save. He allowed just two baserunners in his outing, and struck out three.
Marist scored eight runs in the first on the strength of seven hits, two walks, a wild pitch and an error. Eight straight Red Foxes reached base at one point, including a two-run single by Shank in his second plate appearance of the inning.
Iona scored its lone run in the fourth, but Marist responded with two runs in the bottom half of the inning. The Red Foxes started the inning with three consecutive hits, and added a run on a double-play groundout.
Iona starter Matthew Kriss, who recorded just one out, took the loss to fall to 1-1. Kriss also served as the designated hitter and was one of two Gaels to have a two-hit game, along with first baseman Christian Choman. For the game, the Gaels mustered nine hits.
Marist is now 20-14-1 overall and 11-4 in the MAAC; Iona is 6-33 overall and 2-13 in MAAC play. The Red Foxes will return to action on Wednesday against Army in the eighth annual Hudson Valley Baseball Classic at Dutchess Stadium in Fishkill. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. A radio broadcast will be available on WKIP 1450 AM in Poughkeepsie and on GoRedFoxes.com.