WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – Starting pitcher Jack Buckley was dominant in Franklin & Marshall baseball's 2-0 (7 innings) game one win over Clarkson on Saturday evening before the Diplomats dropped the nightcap by a tough 5-4 (8 innings) score.
The pair of non-conference decisions brought F&M to 5-6-1 overall while the Golden Knights evened their record at 2-2.
Game 1: F&M 2, Clarkson 0 (7 Innings)
Buckley (3-0) was dealing throughout game one and totaled seven shutout innings, surrendering just three hits and striking out seven. He tossed 85 pitches and faced a total of 25 batters during his efficient showing on the mound.
The Diplomats' sophomore lefty has put together a torrid start to the season with a meager 0.92 ERA in 19 2/3 innings so far in 2018. Saturday's win marked his second during the Florida Spring Break trip after he twirled seven scoreless with seven strikeouts against Ripon on Monday.
His counterpart starting pitcher Will Coleman (0-1) kept the Diplomats off the scoreboard through the opening six innings before F&M struck for two runs on three hits in the top of the seventh.
Dan Marano led off with a double and was sent home off a Matthew Kann RBI single for the 1-0 Diplomat edge. F&M tacked on later in the frame when a Kelsey Launi RBI single allowed Kevin Lammers to score from second. Buckley sat the Golden Knights down in order during the bottom of the inning to secure the shutout victory.
F&M owned a 5-3 advantage in hits. Marano and Andrew Poirier each tallied a double.
Game 2: Clarkson 5, F&M 4 (8 Innings)
A Justin Cavegn RBI single in the bottom of the second, followed by a Kawahara RBI single in the fifth, gave the Diplomats a 2-0 advantage. Clarkson responded with four runs on four singles in the top of the sixth to storm in front at 4-2.
However, F&M answered in the bottom of the frame with a two-out rally that resulted in two runs on three hits. Max Schwartz got action started with an RBI single that plated Kann from second. Cavegn stepped to the plate next with runners on first and second and laced an RBI single of his own that scored Andrew Poirier, tying the game at 4-4.
The Golden Knights tallied the winning run in the top of the eighth with a two-out RBI double that sent a runner home from first, before Clarkson retired F&M in order to close out the bottom of the frame.
Kann went 2-for-4 with one run scored from the cleanup spot while Cavegn notched a 2-for-3 effort with two RBIs and a run scored. F&M led in hits at 9-8.
Starting pitcher Jonathan Cole tossed 5 2/3 innings, allowing four earned on six hits while striking out seven. Reliever Jared Schott (0-1) was charged with the loss after throwing 2 1/3 frames with one earned and a strikeout. Ethan Kornbrek (1-0) secured the Clarkson win out of the bullpen with a 2 1/3 shutout innings.
The Diplomats aim to finish off their trip on a high note when F&M faces the country's No. 15 ranked team Southern Maine at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow in Auburndale, Fla.