Army Opens Spring Trip By Sweeping Yale

Alex Jensen

Alex Jensen

March 9, 2013

Game One Box Score (.pdf) Get Acrobat Reader

Game Two Box Score (.pdf) Get Acrobat Reader

TAMPA, Fla. - Alex Jensen combined to go 4-for-8 with four RBI and five runs scored, and Army received quality starting pitching in both games as the Black Knights swept a doubleheader from Yale, 14-4 and 8-4, on Saturday afternoon at Paul Straub Field at Hyer Family Park on the campus of Jesuit High School.

Jensen finished 3-for-3 with four RBI and three runs scored to help Army (2-7) to the lopsided victory in the first game. Alex Robinett (1-1) earned the victory on the mound for the Black Knights in the opener, striking out six over six strong innings. He allowed four runs on seven hits and one walk. Jacob Page went 2-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored, and Mark McCants was 2-for-4 with three runs scored to help fuel Army's 12-hit explosion.

Brock Davidson (1-0) pitched seven strong innings in the nightcap, permitting just one run on six hits as Army doubled up Yale (0-2) to complete the sweep. The freshman left-hander struck out three and did not walk a batter. Justin French tossed a scoreless eighth inning, striking out two of the three batters he faced, and Gunnar Carroll recorded the final two outs to squelch Yale's comeback attempt and nail down the victory.

Page went 2-for-4 with a double, two RBI and two runs scored to lead Army's offense in the second game. Connor Love was 1-for-4 with three RBI, while Patrick Mescher finished 1-for-2 with three runs scored.

"It was good to see us come out and pick up a couple of wins today," said Army head coach Joe Sottolano. "It all started on the mound where we received a pair of solid starting performances. Alex (Robinett) pitched five solid innings in the first game, and Brock (Davidson) gave us seven great innings in the second game. I thought we had some great moments offensively throughout the day, and we picked the ball up consistently as well. We continue to make strides in all three phases of the game, and I am confident that we will build on today's effort."

Army sent 10 men to the plate in the first inning of the opener, scoring six runs on three hits and a pair of costly Yale errors to assume an early 6-0 lead. McCants singled with one out and Jensen was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second. McCants and Jensen then executed a double-steal, and McCants scored the game's first run on Mescher's RBI ground out. After Harold Earls walked to put runners on the corners, Page and Michael Sands drilled consecutive RBI singles to increase Army's advantage to 3-0. Love's grounder was then misplayed by the Yale shortstop, allowing Page and Sands to score unearned runs. Love scored an unearned run of his own when the Bulldogs' catcher threw the ball away.

Yale got one run back in the top of the second on Tom O'Neill's RBI single. Kevin Fortunato began the inning with a base hit, advanced to second on Brent Lawson's ground out, took third when Eric Hsieh singled and scored on O'Neill's base hit.

The Black Knights extended their lead to 8-1 in the bottom of the second inning, scoring two more runs on two hits and another Yale miscue. McCants led off the inning with a single, stole second base and scored on Jensen's RBI double. Jensen, who advanced on the throw home, scored from third when Mescher reached on an error by the Bulldogs' shortstop.

Army tacked on another insurance run in the fourth inning, increasing their cushion to 9-1. Jensen singled, Mescher was hit by a pitch and Earls walked to load the bases for Page, who drove home Jensen when he reached on a fielder's choice.

An RBI single by Mescher in the fifth inning pushed the Black Knights' margin to 10-1. Jon Crucitti singled leading off the frame, advanced to third on a Yale error and scored on Mescher's base hit to center field.

Yale plated three runs in the top of the sixth to draw to within to 10-4. The Bulldogs loaded the bases with nobody out and Hsieh was hit by a pitch to force the first run home. O'Neill followed with a run-scoring single and Chris Piwinski added an RBI ground out to cap the rally.

Army put the game away in the bottom of the sixth, scoring four more runs on two hits and two Yale errors to make it 14-4. Dakari Cooke walked leading off the inning and stole second base. Andrew Johnson then reached on an error and Grant Van Orden connected with an RBI single to left field to score Cooke from second. McCants later walked to load the bases for Jensen, who hammered a three-run triple down the right field line.

Fortunato went 2-for-3 with a double and two runs scored to pace Yale offensively in the opener. Hsieh and O'Neill also collected two hits apiece.

David Hickey (0-1) took the loss for the Bulldogs after yielding eight runs (four earned) on six hits and two walks over 1.1 innings of work.

Army struck first in the nightcap, plating a pair of two-out runs in the top of the first inning to grab a 2-0 lead. The first two Black Knights were retired, but a hit batsman, walk and base hit loaded the bases. Page and Van Orden were then hit by pitches to force home the first two runs of the game.

Yale countered in the bottom of the first, scoring one run on David Toups' RBI ground out. Cale Hanson doubled to left field with one out, advanced to third base on a wild pitch and scored when Toups bounced out to second base.

Army made it 4-1 in the third inning, pushing across two runs on one hit and two Yale errors. Once again, both of the Black Knights' runs were scored with two outs. Love drove in the first run of the frame with an RBI single to centerfield, and Van Orden scored the second run when Crucitti reached on an error.

The Black Knights began to pull away in the fourth inning, scoring three runs on four hits and another Yale gaffe. Jensen singled leading off the inning and he motored around to third base on Mescher's base hit. Page's single to right field scored Jensen, and Van Orden's infield hit loaded the bases for the Black Knights. Love and Daniel Cortes delivered the next two runs, giving Army a 7-1 lead.

Army added an insurance run in the sixth inning to extend its advantage to 8-1, but Yale scored three times against the Black Knights' bullpen in the bottom of the ninth to account for the final margin.

Green Campbell and Piwinski both posted two hits to pace Yale's six-hit attack in the nightcap.

Army and Yale close out their three-game series on Sunday when the teams play a single nine-inning game at the New York Yankees Spring Training Complex. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m.

Game Notes: Army moves to 54-34-1 all-time versus Yale ... the Black Knights banged out a season-high 12 hits in the first game ... Army also registered a season-best 14 runs in the opener ... Alex Jensen equaled his career high with four RBI in the opener ... Jensen also had a career-best three runs scored and a career-high six total bases in the first game ... Grant Van Orden authored his first career multiple-hit game in the opener ... he also produced his first career RBI in the opening contest ... Mark McCants scored a career-best three runs in the first game ... Patrick Mescher scored a career-high three runs in the nightcap ... Brock Davidson set career highs with seven innings pitched and three strikeouts in the second game.

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