Team effort leads Lions past Bearcats


Courtesy of Kate Foultz, Beacon Archive

The Lions now hold a record of 2-4 in 2020.

By Kayla Buck

The baseball team earned the first win of its spring break trip Tuesday afternoon against Saint Vincent College by a score of 6-4 in Auburndale, Florida.

Junior Johnny Maffei pitched six innings, giving up eight hits and four runs. Relievers sophomore Bryan Simmons-Hayes and senior Jack Fox pitched an inning each and allowed zero earned runs.

The Lions benefitted from two hits by freshman infielder Thai Morgan and sophomore outfielder Quinton Copeland early in the first inning but did not score. Maffei walked one batter in the bottom half of the inning, but the defense did not allow a run.

Junior utility player Andre Padovani started the second inning with a single into right field, but the second at-bat resulted in an out at second base. Sophomore outfielder Louie Davolio also reached base but got caught stealing at second for the second out. A fly ball to right field by sophomore infielder Joe Colucci concluded the Lions’ inning. Maffei faced three batters, two forced out by ground balls and the third tagged out at first. 

At the top of the third inning, senior infielder Joe Paladino walked to first, but the following batters failed to bring him home. The Bearcats scored one run in the inning off of three hits.

The Lions retaliated in the top of the fourth with a single and steal by Padovani. Davoli doubled, bringing in Padovani for the Lions’ first run. The Bearcats countered with three hits and two runs to give them a 3-1 advantage. 

Freshman infielder Jake Hatch hit a solo home run at the top of the fifth inning. Paladino walked to first again following the home run, Morgan reached base off a fielder’s choice, and Cope singled. The Bearcats tagged Paladino out at second, leaving room for Morgan after Cope’s hit. Morgan then stole to third and scored off a wild pitch, leaving Cope at third. 

Senior outfielder Cam Beattie reached second base on a Bearcat throwing error which allowed Cope to score. Freshman catcher Matt Nachamie singled to left field, and Beattie advanced to third. Two Lions failed to reach base following a pitching change, completing the inning. Maffei maintained the lead with three outs in three batters.

The Bearcats benefitted from two hits and a walk to load the bases in the sixth inning, but the Lions held Saint Vincent scoreless.

Morgan began the seventh inning with a double into center field. Cope singled and brought Morgan in to score. With Cope still on base, the Bearcats changed pitchers. Following the change, Beattie reached base on a fielder’s choice, but the Bearcats tagged Cope out at second. Nachami singled and advanced Beattie to second. A ground ball out by Padovani put Beattie and Nachami in scoring position at third and second respectively. Beattie scored off a single by Davolio. Colucci walked, leaving the bases loaded before Hatch grounded out to end the Lions’ inning.

Maffei hit a batter before Simmon-Hayes relieved him mid-inning. The reliever gave up a hit, and the Bearcats scored.

The Lions could not increase their lead in the eighth or ninth innings. Fox closed the game in three batters to give the Lions their first win of the trip.

The Lions’ spring trip continues in Auburndale against Grove City College on March 4 at 12 p.m.