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The Hawks won the opener, 12-4, and then fell in the series finale, 6-2.

(Tunnell, UMES)

SALISBURY, Maryland — The Maryland Eastern Shore baseball offense found its rhythm on Sunday (Mar. 4), sending 12 runs across the plate on the way to their first win of the season. The victory came in game one as the Hawks split the day’s doubleheader with the Lafayette Leopards, at Arthur W. Perdue Stadium.

The Hawks won the opener, 12-4, and then fell in the series finale, 6-2.

“It feels good to get that first win under our belt” Hawks coach Brian Hollamon said. “We [the coaching staff] have been preaching the little things needed to win, and it’s good for our team to see it pay off by playing a complete game.”

Eight of the nine Hawks in the starting lineup reached base and the one who did not still managed to produce an RBI. Juniors Ryan Rotondo (Warwick, Rhode Island) and Joey Nicastro (New Market, Maryland) led the charge with a combined five RBI’s on four hits. Freshmen Dillon Oxyer (Pasadena, Maryland) and Jordan Torres (Brooklyn, New York) enjoyed multi-hit games, and Torres knocked in two teammates as well.

On the mound, the Cecil County duo of seniors Toby Hoskins (North East, Maryland) and Chris Melrath (Rising Sun, Maryland) combined for seven strikeouts to seal the win. Hoskins started and earned the victory, surrendering three earned runs while punching out four.

In the finale, freshman Avery Tunnell (Dover, Delaware) added an RBI single and sophomore pitcher Marty Tolson, Jr. (Stafford, Virginia) only gave up one earned over four innings. Senior Christian Rose (Martinsburg, West Virginia) continued his strong start with two scoreless relief innings.

Lafayette scored first in the opener, but The Shore capitalized on an error to steal the lead in the second. They would add a run in the third before exploding in the fourth, sending ten to the plate and scoring six times. Torres’ single—his first as a college player—and Rotondo’s double were the pivotal moments to help the Hawks win big.

The script flipped in the second game. Tunnell’s RBI single helped the Hawks get on the board first, but Lafayette tallied six runs on the board before the Hawks were able to answer, scoring off a passed ball in the ninth. The Leopards proved efficient, plating six runs on six hits to win the series.

Maryland Eastern Shore will travel to Navy for a midweek contest Wednesday (Mar. 7) before returning to Perdue Stadium for a weekend series with NJIT (Mar. 10-11).

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