Whiting, Ind. – The third-seeded Robert Morris Baseball team defeated fourth-seeded Purdue North Central University by the score of 6-1 to open up play in the CCAC Conference Tournament on Tuesday, April 30th at Oil City Stadium in Whiting, Indiana. The Eagles raised its record to 33-16 and will play fifth-seeded University of Saint Francis on Thursday, May 1st at 6:00 P.M. in the next round of the double-elimination CCAC Tournament. Fans can watch the game live at www.eaglesportsnetwork.com.
Robert Morris was confident coming into today's game with ace and 2012 CCAC Pitcher of the Year Rey Rodriguez on the mound. However, Rodriguez struggled in the opening inning walking two batters after the lead off Panther reached first base on an error to load the bases with one out. Rodriguez then walked in the game's first run but got out of the inning with a strikeout and a ground out and RMU trailed 1-0 after the first inning.
Panthers' pitcher Dan Snyder kept the Eagles' hitters at bay through the first five innings with RMU scattering four hits and not able to score a run. However, the Eagles opened the sixth inning with three straight singles by Andrew Sebastian, Andy Roen, and Jory Koehler with Sebastian scoring on Koehler's base hit to tie the game. Anthony Scarlatta grounded out to third but advanced Roen and Koehler to second and third with just one out. Pat Driscoll provided the big hit in the inning, doubling down the third base line to score Roen and Koehler for a 3-1 Eagles' lead.
In the meantime, RMU starting pitcher Rey Rodriguez began to settle down and allowed only three hits in the final seven innings. The Eagles offense added a run in the top of the seventh inning when Andrew Sebastian doubled into the left field corner and scored on a Koehler base hit. Koehler came through again in the top of the ninth, singling home Sebastian and Jon Nowak to give the Eagles the 6-1 victory. Rodriguez went the distance to pick up the win and raise his record to 7-2.
"This win was a great team effort," stated RMU Head Coach Jason Becker. "Our guys showed great poise and battled the entire game. Rey (Rodriguez) hung in there after a tough start and finished with a great night. Now we have to come back tomorrow with the same kind of effort against a good Saint Francis team."
In other CCAC Tournament action, top-seeded Judson University knocked off Trinity Christian College 7-2 in the opening game and fifth-seeded Saint Francis upset second-seeded Olivet Nazarene in a com-from-behind 9-7 win.
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