PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Columbia used two big innings in each end of Friday's doubleheader sweep at Penn. In game one, the Lions scored eight times in the seventh to break open a 4-2 game and win, 12-2.
In game two, Columbia led 3-2 going into the fourth and scored nine times in the inning to lead 12-2 and eventually win 13-3. With the sweep, the Lions improve their record to 20-23 and 11-7 in the Ivy League.
Game 1 Recap
In his final collegiate start, Pat Lowery allowed one earned run over 5 2/3 innings and the Lions scored eight times in the seventh inning to break the game open and win the opener 12-2 to start its four-game series against Penn.
In the bottom of the first, Penn's Brandon Engelhardt led off with a well-placed extra-base hit down the left field line. Dario Pizzano dug it out of the left field corner as Engelhardt rounded second and tried for third base. Aaron Silbar's relay throw was a perfect strike to third base as Eisen slapped the tag on Engelhardt to keep Penn off the board in the first.
Columbia led 3-2 with two outs in the fifth inning when Alex Black connected for his first collegiate home run, a deep drive off the scoreboard in left field. The solo shot gave Columbia a 4-2 lead in support of Lowery, who was going strong entering the sixth.
With two men on base and two outs in the sixth, Harrison Slutsky came on in relief of Lowery and proceeded to end the inning on a strikeout of Ryan Dietrich, who had doubled twice already in the game.
Seizing the chance to pad their lead, Columbia's first five base runners reached base to start the seventh inning without the benefit of a base hit. Three hit batters and two bases on balls made the score 6-2.
Nick Crucet followed with a line drive single to center field, making it 7-2. Enmanuel Cabreja walked to force in another run and Silbar lined a shot off the pitcher's foot for an infield hit that made it 9-2.
Two batters later, Alexander Aurrichio ripped a pinch-hit single into right field to score a run and Pizzano's two-out single ultimately made it a 12-2 game.
Slutsky finished it up by getting Matt McKinnon to bounce into a 6-3 double play to end it and nail down his third save of the season.
Crucet went 3-for-3 in game one to total eight hits in his previous 12 at-bats. Every Columbia starter also scored a run in game one.
Game 2 Recap
Trailing 1-0 in the top of the third, Columbia scored three times in the third to take a 3-1 lead. With two outs and Aaron Silbar at second base, Billy Rumpke lined an 0-1 pitch the other way into right field to tie the game at 1-1.
Dario Pizzano and Nick Ferraresi followed with consecutive singles back up the middle to push across the second run of the inning. Alex Black followed with a single through the hole into left field that made it 3-1 Columbia.
Penn got a run back in its half of the third inning on two two-out doubles by Ryan Dietrich and Ronnie Glenn, Penn's game two starting pitcher.
Ahead 3-2 in the fourth, Columbia poured it on again, scoring nine times on six hits. With Nick Crucet at second and one out, Silbar smacked a triple into the left center field gap to score Crucet and give the Lions a 4-2 advantage.
Jon Eisen followed with a four-pitch walk and Rumpke laced his second straight RBI single to make it a 5-2 game. Pizzano then stepped to the dish and ripped a two-run double into left center to bring home two more, handing Columbia a 7-2 lead.
An RBI single by Alex Black brought home another run to make it 8-2 and two more runs crossed on an error that would have ended the frame. Columbia took advantage as Silbar stroked his second extra-base hit of the inning, a run-scoring double that made the score 11-2. Eisen capped the scoring with a ground single into left field and after the dust cleared, Columbia led 12-2.
With one out in the seventh, Black deposited a 1-0 fastball by Patrick Brennan over the left field wall for his second home run of the day, making it 13-2.
Meanwhile, Columbia starter Tim Giel hung up zeroes through the middle innings to keep the Lions in command. Penn touched Giel for a run in the eighth, but Giel ended his day with eight solid innings. He allowed three runs on seven hits, walked one and struck out five.
George Thanopoulos came in to pitch the ninth and struck out the side to nail down the win for Columbia.
Black (4-for-5, three RBI), Pizzano (3-for-5, two RBI), Eisen (3-for-5, RBI), Rumpke (2-for-4, two RBI) and Silbar (3-for-5, two RBI) each had multiple-hit games for Columbia in game two.
Columbia and Penn will finish the four-game series tomorrow, Saturday, April 28 on Robertson Field at Satow Stadium with a doubleheader beginning at noon. Columbia's eight seniors will be honored in a brief pre-game ceremony before game one in their final games in a Columbia uniform.
Columbia has won six of its last eight games ... Columbia's nine-run fourth inning (and its eight-run seventh in game one) is the most runs scored in an inning since the Lions scored 10 runs in the eighth inning at St. John's in March 2010 ... the 25 combined runs was the most scored by a Columbia team in a doubleheader since the 26 runs scored on the first day of the 2008 Ivy League Championship series at Dartmouth ... Pat Lowery finished his season with a 2.35 earned run average and went 3-1 with a 1.80 ERA in five Ivy League starts ... he struck out 30 batters in 30 innings during league action ... Lowery set a career best with 46 strikeouts this season ... he finished his career in ninth place on the all-time strikeouts list with 147 ... all three of Harrison Slutsky's saves have come during Ivy League play ... in game two, Columbia's top three hitters - Jon Eisen, Billy Rumpke and Dario Pizzano - went a combined 8-for-14 with five runs scored and five runs batted in ... with his three hits in game two, Eisen moved into third place on Columbia's all-time hits list with 192 ... with his two RBI in game two, Pizzano is now tied with Matt Buckmiller '02 for sixth in career RBI (105) ... the Lions are 13-6 when they score in the first inning ... Columbia won 20 games for the second time in three seasons.