Rhode Island Lineup
White (CF), Heiss (SS), Vargas (1B), Cristino (DH), Coutts (RF), Ulliana (C), Brodeur (2B), Cherry (3B), Cavaliere (LF), Wilson (P)
George Mason Lineup
Reckling (LF), Driscoll (C), Acker (CF), Quinn (1B), Klein (RF), Popatak (3B), Fitzgerald (DH), Brooks (2B), Aponts (SS), DiCesare (P)
How it Happened
George Mason used a trio of two-out runs to defeat Rhody 3-1 for the second day in a row.
Making his return to the hill for the first time since Feb. 22, Tyler Wilson retired each of the nine hitters he faced through a 3.0-inning start.
Nick Robinson kept things rolling, recording five straight outs before allowing the Patriots their first hit of the game in the top of the fifth. There, Greg Popatak worked the count full before lining a double into right field. Jack Fitzgerald followed with an RBI double that plated Fitzgerald and put Mason on top 1-0.
The lead was short-lived however, as Jackson Coutts led off the bottom of the fifth by launching the first pitch he saw over the right field wall to make it a 1-1 game. Sonny Ulliana then singled up the middle, and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Josh Brodeur, but was stranded in scoring position.
Rhody (17-22, 8-6) managed just one base-runner the rest of the way, when John Cristino drew a leadoff walk in the top of the seventh.
The Patriots (17-25, 4-10) pulled ahead for good in the top of the eighth, on a pair of unearned runs. Alejandro Aponte first reached base on a Rhode Island error and Cam Reckling followed with a single that put runners on first and second. Robinson was then lifted for Tyler Brosius, who nearly got the Rams out of the jam unharmed.
Brosius got the first hitter faced, Logan Driscoll, to ground into a 6-5 fielder's choice and then fanned Brady Acker for the second out of the inning. Brosius then worked back from a 3-0 count on Tim Quinn, and came close to ending the inning on a strikeout, but Ulliana was unable to hold on to the foul tip that would have been strike three. It then appeared as though Brosius would end it on a perfect pickoff at second base, but Reckling managed to avoid Kevin Heiss' tag to keep the inning alive.
Quinn eventually drew his second walk of the day to load the bases, and Bailey Klein then singled to left center to drive in what proved to be the game-winning runs.
Inside the Box Score
- Redshirt senior Tyler Wilson made his first appearance in 64 days, after sustaining an injury in URI's second series of the season. Limited to just three innings as he works his way back, the Rhody southpaw needed just 33 pitches to record nine consecutive outs.
- Sophomore Jackson Coutts went 2-for-4, including his fourth home run of the season.
- Junior Sonny Ulliana and sophomores Xavier Vargas and Austin White each singled for the Rams, who were limited to just five hits on the afternoon.
- Freshman John Cristino drew Rhody's lone walk of the afternoon.
- Junior Nick Robinson was charged with the loss, allowing three runs (one earned) on four hits over four innings of relief work. He struck out four and walked three.
- Redshirt junior Tyler Brosius gave up one hit over the game's final two innings.
- Jared DiCesare went the distance for Mason, fanning six while allowing just five hits and one walk in the the Patriots' first complete game of the season.
The Rams and Patriots return to The Beck to close out the conference series at noon on Sunday.