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Two-Run Seventh Pushes Maryland Past Liberty
The Maryland Terrapins scored two, two-out runs in the seventh, breaking a 3-3 tie, en route to a 5-3 win over the Liberty Flames at Bob "Turtle" Smith Stadium, Tuesday.
Liberty first baseman Alex Close drove in two runs with two hits for the Flames in the contest. Second baseman Bryan Aanderud also singled in the first inning to collect a hit in 12-straight games, the longest hitting streak of his career.
Liberty drops to 22-20 overall on the season. Maryland improves to 22-20 overall. The contest was the first of two meetings between the two teams this season. The Flames and Terrapins will meet again at Liberty Baseball Stadium on May 1.
Liberty struck for the game's first run in the top of the second. Center fielder Ryan Cordell led off the inning by ripping a double off Terrapins third baseman Kevin Martir's glove and down the left field line. Designated hitter Danny Grauer then moved Cordell to third on a ground out to second base. Close followed with a single to left field to drive in Cordell and give the Flames a 1-0 advantage.
After being held scoreless by Liberty starter Jared Lyons over the first four innings, Maryland plated two, two-out runs in the fifth off Flames reliever Adam Parks. Center fielder Charlie White walked with two away in the inning and scored on triple off the left field wall by right fielder Jordan Hagel, tying the game at 1-1. A fielding error by Liberty shortstop Dalton Britt on a grounder by the next batter, first baseman LaMonte Wade, allowed Hagel to come home with the second run of the frame and put the Terrapins in front, 2-1.
Liberty answered with two runs in the top of the sixth, temporarily taking back the lead in the contest. With one out, Cordell walked and moved to second base, as Grauer reached on a fielding error by Maryland's Martir. After a Terrapins pitching change, Close lined a single back through the middle of the diamond, plating Cordell to knot the game at 2-2. Third baseman Sammy Taormina followed with a sharply-hit single back through the middle, scoring Grauer for a 3-2 Flames' advantage.
In the bottom of the inning, Maryland tied the contest. With two outs, catcher Jack Cleary lifted his first home run of the season over the left field wall, drawing the Terrapins even on the scoreboard at 3-3.
Maryland struck for two runs with two outs in the seventh inning. Wade started the uprising with a single and moved to second on an infield single by Matir. Designated hitter Greg Olenski then walked to load the bases with Terrapins. Left fielder Anthony Papio followed with a two-run single to give Maryland a 5-3 lead.
In the ninth, the Flames were able to bring the tying run to the plate. With two outs, right fielder Ashton Perritt chopped a double into left field to put a runner in scoring position. However, Terps reliever Kevin Mooney retired the next batter to close out the win for Maryland.
Liberty reliever Shawn Clowers falls to 0-1 on the season. The left-hander gave up two runs on three hits in his lone inning of work, the seventh.
Maryland reliever Bobby Ruse extends his record to 4-0. He pitched two scoreless innings. Mooney recorded his sixth save of the year by pitching a scoreless ninth frame.
Liberty collected seven hits in the game. Besides Close, Perritt had two hits, both doubles.
Maryland had 10 hits.
Liberty travels to Norfolk, Va., for a contest with the Old Dominion Monarchs, tomorrow. Game time at the Bud Metheny Baseball Complex is scheduled for 3 p.m.