WEST HAVEN, Conn. – The Holy Cross baseball team went scoreless for six straight innings, dropping a 12-inning, 5-4 decision to Ivy League opponent Yale at Yale Field. With the decision, the squad moves to 26-18 while the Bulldogs go to 10-30-1. Sophomore Brandon Cipolla (Abington, Mass.) put up two Holy Cross runs on the day, sending out his third home run of the season in the second inning.
Cipolla put the Crusaders on the board first, blasting a two-run home run to left field in the top of the second inning, giving Holy Cross a 2-0 lead and scoring senior Steve Tkowski (Bourne, Mass.). Sophomore Kyle Stearns (Orland Park, Ill.) led off the top of the third with the team's third hit and then came around to score the squad's third run on a RBI bunt single from Alex Maldonado (Brooklyn, N.Y.). Junior starter Chris Kono (Greenwich, Conn.) allowed two hits but no runs after the first three innings as the Crusaders held a 3-0 edge.
The Bulldogs rallied back for four runs on four hits off Kono with two outs in the bottom of the fifth, taking a 4-3 lead. The Yale lead didn't last long as junior Stephen Wadsworth (Wayland, Mass.) connected for a RBI single, scoring senior Chris Sintetos (Bethesda, Md.) who reached base on a hit-by-pitch in the top of the sixth, knotting the score at 4-4. Freshman Collin Manning (Charlotte, N.C.) relieved Kono in the bottom of the sixth and allowed one base runner but no runs to cross home as the teams remained in a 4-4 tie after six full innings.
Yale put together the game's only offense in the seventh and eighth innings, tallying a single in the bottom of the seventh and then putting runners on the corners in the bottom of the eighth. Sophomore Mike Ahmed (East Longmeadow, Mass.) left his defensive duties at third base to pitch in the bottom of eighth with the two runners on. He struck out the first batter he saw as the Crusaders also shined defensively, catching the first base runner stealing on the same play to end the inning. Ahmed followed with a three-up, three-down ninth inning as the Bulldogs and Crusaders headed into extra innings tied 4-4.
The Crusaders put two runners on in the top of the 10th but a double play ball ended the scoring chance. After a scoreless 11th inning, Yale put one runner on and then hit a game-winning single into the right center gap in the bottom of the 12th. With the hit, the Crusaders fell by a final 5-4 tally.
Freshman Jeremy Perron (Bradenton, Fla.), who entered the game in the 11th inning, picked up the losing decision and goes to 0-1 overall. He allowed one run on two hits in 1.1 innings pitched. Yale's reliever, Cale Hanson, finished with the win, improving to 2-0 on the season. He pitched two full shutout innings, striking out four Crusader batters. In all, Holy Cross scored four runs on six hits while the Bulldogs scored five runs on 11 hits, committing two errors.
The Crusaders compete in their final non-conference game of the season, traveling to Siena tomorrow, April 25. Game time is set for 4:00 p.m. at Siena Field in Loudonville, N.Y.