NEW YORK - The Columbia baseball team split Wednesday's doubleheader vs. New York City rival Manhattan, notching a 6-3 win early in the day before dropping a 4-0 decision in game two.
Game 1 Recap:
The Lions (7-12) rolled to their fifth consecutive win behind the arm of Columbia reliever Zack Tax (1-0), who blanked the Jaspers (10-10) without any hits or runs while fanning two over two innings of work on the hill.
Manhattan took advantage of walks early on to get two runners in scoring position before Ramon Ortega tripled to the right side, sending them both the plate to give the Jaspers a 2-0 first-inning lead.
Columbia got on the board in the bottom of the frame after Eric Williams drew a walk and eventually scored thanks to an Alex Black double and an RBI single by Nick Ferraresi to cut Manhattan's lead in half.
The Lions' offense continued to build momentum while Columbia pitchers turned a solid effort on the hill, holding Manhattan scoreless over the next five frames.
In the bottom of the third, the Lions went ahead for good with another pair of runs. Nick Crucet reached base after he was hit by a pitch and advanced to second with a sacrifice bunt by Williams. Black then walked to get two runners on. Ferraresi came through with his second RBI of the day, scoring Crucet. Meanwhile, Black came around for the second score of the frame due to a throwing error by left fielder Brendan Slattery.
Another two-run inning extended Columbia's lead in the bottom of the fifth with timely hitting and additional errors by the Jaspers. A leadoff double by Williams got things started, and a Ferraresi walk put two on with no outs. Williams and Ferraresi then stole second and third, and Logan Boyher sent WIlliams to score with an RBI single. Ferraresi also made his way home on the extended play after a muffed throw by Manhattan at the plate allowed him the opportunity to score.
Gus Craig was hit by a pitch to start the sixth inning as the centerfielder worked his way around the diamond into scoring position at third thanks to a sacrifice bunt by Serena and a groundout by Crucet. An RBI single by Williams scored Craig as the Lions took a comfortable 6-2 lead with one inning to play.
The Jaspers attempted a comeback in the top of the seventh after back-to-back singles by Nick Camastro and Aidan John O'Leary put two runners on with no outs. Black, closing for the Lions on the hill, brought the inning to a near close after the next two Jaspers flied out, but Matt Troisi came in to pinch hit for Manhattan and cranked an RBI single to make it 6-3. David Vandercook finished off the win for the Lions with an unassisted play at third to halt the Jaspers' rally.
Game 2 Recap:
Manhattan snapped Columbia's winning streak with a seven-inning shutout victory in the second end of the doubleheader as the Jaspers put power behind their bats with eight hits while holding the Lions to four.
The Lions dug an early hole after recording two errors that led to a 2-0 score through four innings.
The final damage came in the top of the fifth inning as Christian Santisteban homered off of Columbia reliever Willis Robbins to double the Jaspers' lead and put the game out of reach.