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Baseball Splits Doubleheader at Harvard; Drops Nightcap in 17 Innings
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Courtesy: Princeton Athletic Communications
Release: 04/05/2009
The Princeton baseball team split its doubleheader at Harvard on Sunday. Princeton won the opener 3-1 behind a strong pitching performance from sophomore David Palms and timely hitting from sophomore Matt Connor. The nightcap was a marathon game that went Harvard’s way 13-12 in 17 innings. Princeton erased an 8-0 deficit to force extra innings, but fell in the third-longest Princeton baseball game ever played.

Game 1 (Box Score)

Princeton snapped a five-game losing streak with a 3-1 win in the opening game of the doubleheader. Princeton scored single runs in three innings as junior Jack Murphy and sophomore Matt Connor each hit solo home runs.

Princeton went ahead in the third inning when Connor drew a leadoff walk and came around to score when senior Dan DeGeorge doubled. Connor then made it 2-0 when he led off the fifth with a solo home run.

Harvard got a run back in the bottom of the fifth when Chris Rouches doubled in a run, but Princeton reassumed the two-run lead in the sixth on Murphy’s solo homer.

Princeton had three runs on 11 hits in the win, while Harvard was held to a run on four hits. Princeton sophomore starter David Palms earned the complete game win, while the loss went to Brent Suter.

Game 2
(Box Score)

Harvard earned a 13-12 win in 17 innings in the nightcap. Harvard built an 8-0 lead in the game, but Princeton put up four runs in the sixth and ninth innings to force extras. Princeton then took leads of 10-8 and 12-10 in extra innings, but Harvard came back each time to win.

The game was the third longest in Princeton baseball history, with only two games going further, both to 18 innings. Those two games occurred in 1905 and 1910. Princeton has not played 16 innings in a game since 1957.

After three scoreless innings, Harvard broke the game open with three runs in the fourth inning and five runs in the fifth. Princeton cut the lead in half in the sixth inning with four runs. Senior Adrian Turnham singled in the first run and junior Jon Broscious scored the second in a wild pitch and both senior Derek Beckman and DeGeorge singled in runs.

Harvard maintained the four-run lead until the top of the ninth when Princeton plated four more runs to force extra innings. DeGeorge led off the inning with a solo home run, but Harvard got the next two batters out before Princeton staged a three-run two-out rally. Juniors David Hale and Brian Berkowitz drew walks to put two aboard and Broscious then singled after a pitching change to plate Hale. Berkowitz then scored on a passed ball and a Turnham single plated Broscious to draw Princeton even.

Each team put runners on base in the 10th, 11th and 12th innings, but it wasn’t until the 13th that either team was able to put any runs on the board. With one out, Hale and Berkowitz both singled to remove the Harvard pitcher. Broscious then singled to load the bases and Connor hit a single up the middle to plate two runs.

Harvard answered back in the next inning to keep the game going. With two outs, Harry Douglas singled to put a runner on base for Tom Stack-Babich, who homered to right field on an 0-1 pitch to knot the game at 10-10.

The teams continued to threaten but both the Princeton and Harvard pitchers were able to work well with men on base and keep zeros on the scoreboard. Princeton regained the lead with two runs in the 17th inning. Freshman Tom Boggiano reached second on an error and then took third on a passed ball. Connor then tripled to plate Boggiano and Connor then came home on a Beckman sac fly.

Once again, Harvard answered right back, this time tying and then winning in the bottom of the 17th inning. Chris Rouches and Reynolds led off the inning with singles and the first run came home when Dillon O’Neill hit a bunt single and advanced on a the runners got an extra base on a throwing error. Princeton issued an intentional pass to reload the bases hoping for a force at home, but Matt Rogers singled up the middle to even the game and keep the bases loaded. The Tigers got a pop up for the first out of the inning and then hoped for a double play to end the inning, but Stack-Babich singled to right to plate the game-winning run.

Princeton scored 12 runs on 28 hits in the loss. The 28 hits set a Princeton record for hits in a game. The previous high of 27 came in a nine-inning game last season at Navy. DeGeorge and Broscious each had five hits in the loss, while Murphy added four. Connor drove in a team0high three runs and Beckman, DeGeorge and Turnham each plated two.

Princeton junior Langford Stuber surrendered the first eight runs on the game on 10 hits in 4.1 innings. Freshman Ryan Makis got out of the fifth inning and turned the ball over to sophomore Tim Feess who pitched two shutout innings of relief. Sophomore Matt Grabowski came on for the eighth inning and wound up throwing 102 pitches over eight innings. He allowed two runs on six hits. Sophomore Chad Ohlendorf pitched the final 1.1 innings and allowed three runs and took the loss. Harvard’s Jeff Reynolds got the win.

--

With the split the Tigers moved to 9-13 overall and 2-6 in the Ivy League. The split also allowed the Tigers to gain a game in the Gehrig Division standings on Columbia, which was swept at Brown. Columbia is 4-4 in league play and the teams meet next weekend in a series at Clarke Field. First, Princeton hosts Rider on Tuesday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. in non-league action.

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