LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. – A three-run sixth inning was the difference in the Sacred Heart baseball team's 4-1 setback at Rider on Friday evening. All three runs came with two outs in what was the second straight loss for the Pioneers, who still have won seven of nine and are now .500 at 12-12.
Tyler Kaiser started the two-out rally with a walk, and after advancing to second on a wild pitch, he came across for the eventual game-winning run on Mike Volaski's single. James Locklear followed that with a RBI double and Christian Estevez added even more insurance with a single for the 4-1 lead.
That was more than enough for Nick Margevicius, who struck out 11 Pioneers in his seven innings of work. He allowed just four hits and walked two, as the one run to come across against him was unearned. Josh Sharik came on for the final six outs, giving up just one lone hit in what was his first save of the season.
That lone SHU run came courtesy of Jesus Medina's fielder's choice, tying the game at one in the top of the fifth after Rider had gotten the game's first run on a Volaski single in the fourth. The Pioneers had loaded the bases with none away thanks to a Cody Doyle walk and two errors but could manage the one run as Margevicius struck out the batter before Medina and then got out of the jam with a foul out.
Sacred Heart also had a runner reach third in the fourth and the sixth only to walk away empty-handed. That summed up the day for the Pioneers, who could manage just five hits. Doyle and Victor Sorrento each had one base knock and a walk.
Rider doubled up SHU in hits behind two each from from Kaiser, Volaski and Estevez. Volaski had the two RBI's and also scored, while Kaiser drew a base on balls.
Sacred Heart starter James Cooksey left the game tied at one after hurling five innings of five-hit ball. James Taubl also performed well, extending his scoreless innings streak to 16.2 thanks to a scoreless seventh and eighth inning in which he surrendered two hits and struck out two. Brent Teller took the loss after pitching the decisive sixth.
Game two of the series has been moved to Sunday as the two teams will now play a doubleheader with first pitch scheduled for 11 am.