Fords finish as #3 seed after sweep at hands of Bullets

GETTYSBURG, Pa. – Matt Liscovitz finished the day 5-for-8 and scored a pair of runs, but Haverford College's baseball team dropped a Centennial Conference doubleheader to host Gettysburg College, 5-4 and 6-2, Saturday afternoon resulting in a third-seed for the postseason conference tournament beginning on Friday, May 3.

Haverford (26-9, 11-7 CC) will travel back to Gettysburg (27-11, 13-5) which finishes second in the final regular season standings, earning the No. 2 seed and the right to host the Fords in the opening round of the double-elimination tournament on Friday.

Saturday's twinbill saw solid pitching performances from the Fords, just not all at once.

Game 1 (box score) starter Kyle Waney threw seven strong innings allowing only three runs of seven Gettysburg hits and a walk while fanning one.

The relievers in Game 2, Max Gerard and Michael de Armas combined to allow only five hits over six scoreless innings to close out the nightcap.

Though he ended up taking the loss in the opener, Clay Bloszies (2-1) got the Fords out of a Waney jam when he came on with no outs and the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh. Both Gettysburg runs in the frame were last two of the three that were charged to Waney.

Bloszies put the side down in order in the eighth and assumed the lead when Haverford pushed three unearned runs across in the top of the ninth to take a 4-3 lead heading into the bottom half of the final inning. The Bullets pushed the tying run across with a one-out sacrifice fly then picked up the game-winning run on a two-out, walk-off RBI single.

The short-lived Haverford lead started with Justin Coulter's one-out single through the right side off Gettysburg starter Drew Felsenthal. Zach Taylor pinch ran for Coulter and moved to second when the next batter, Alex Hudak, reached on an error by the shortstop.

Marley Randazzo took Hudak's place on the base paths and both Taylor and Randazzo moved up a base on an infield single from Liscovitz. Two runs came in on George Hatamiya's single to center field, and the third crossed the plate on William Bannard's single to left-center field.

That would be it for the inning, however, as Felsenthal (6-1) shut the door with a strikeout for the final out, setting the table for the bottom of the ninth comeback.

Gettysburg roughed up starter Brett Cohen (0-2) in Game 2, scoring three runs in the bottom of the first, one in the second, then two more in the third.

Haverford chipped away at the early lead with a run in the bottom of the second, keyed by a Liscovitz bunt single and fielder's choice grounder from Bannard which allowed Liscovitz to trot home.

Coulter's lead-off home run in the ninth cut the Gettysburg advantage to 6-2, and the Fords were able to load the bases with one out, but Bullets starting pitcher Eric Hungerford (7-1) induced a line-out to left field, short enough and hard hit enough to prevent the runners from moving, for the second out of the inning then finished the frame, and the game, with a foul pop-up.

Gerard and de Armas held the Gettysburg bats at bay over the final six innings but the opening runs proved to be too much to overcome.

The regular season continues for the Fords on Monday and Tuesday with a pair of non-conference games against regional opponents. Alvernia College visits Kannerstein Field on Monday for a 3:30 p.m. game followed by Tuesday's 4 p.m. contest against visiting Neumann University.

The Fords will get a couple of days off after the Neumann game before boarding the bus for Friday's return trip to Gettysburg to open the Centennial playoffs.