PHILADELPHIA – Nine runs were the difference in an Ivy League split. In game one, the University of Pennsylvania baseball team fell to Cornell, 9-0, before battling back to take game two, 11-2, on Saturday afternoon at Meiklejohn Stadium.
Penn (17-12, 9-1 Ivy) ended day one against Cornell (15-12, 6-4 Ivy) with the momentum after the pair split the day, each winning by nine runs.
Offensively in game one, the Quakers were held to only five hits, with Cornell’s Michael Byrne controlling their lineup, striking out eight. Even with little production, Penn was still within striking distance for the majority of the game only trailing 1-0 until the fifth inning.
In the fifth, the Big Red, extended their lead to 3-0 on Quaker starter Dan Gautieri (2-4), who would throw 5 1/3 innings, allowing five runs, four earned, on seven hits and three walks. He struck out four Cornell batters.
Freshman reliever Brian Schwarzbach came on in relief of Gautieri, throwing 1 2/3 innings allowing four runs, on four hits, while walking one.
Junior first baseman Jeff McGarry had two of Penn's five hits in the loss, with Austin Bossart, Tim Graul, and Ryan Mincher collecting the others. Bossart and Gary Tesch walked, and Brandon Engelhardt was hit by a pitch, becoming the only other baserunners for Penn in the game.
Game two saw the Quakers have better at-bats offensively, led again by Jeff McGarry, who went 3-for-5 with a double and a RBI. Mike Vilardo also collected two hits, including a double, with Matt Greskoff recording a pair of singles as well. Ryan Mincher and Mitch Montaldo led Penn in the RBI department in game two, each with two.
Senior outfielder Rick Brebner was hit by a pitch three times in game two.
Freshman Jake Cousins earned the victory on the mound, his fourth of the season, after throwing 5 2/3 innings, allowing just two runs, while striking out four.
Leading 2-1 after three innings, Penn exploded for four runs in the fifth, followed up by four runs in the seventh to put the game out of reach for the Big Red. The Quakers would add one more run in the eighth inning to make it, 11-2.
Penn and Cornell will face off tomorrow, wrapping up their four-game Ivy League divisional series. The Quakers and Big Red will play two games, beginning at 12 p.m., at Meiklejohn Stadium. Live audio and stats are available at PennAthletics.com.