Baseball Falls, But So Does School Record
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Baseball Falls, But So Does School Record

The George Mason baseball team could not open its weekend series with Towson with a victory, but Chris Cook did set a new school record while Brig Tison inched closer to another as the Patriots fell to Towson, 12-4. Cook was hit by a pitch in the third inning, the 23rd time this season, breaking a tie with Evan Howard (2002) for most times hit by a pitch in a season. Tison, after going hitless in his first three at-bats, singled in the eighth to extend his hitting streak to 24-straight, one shy of tying Eddie Jordan's school record.

Nick Natoli led off the first inning with a home run and in the second, it was Chris Wychock who went deep to make it 2-0. In the third, Pat Fitzgerald hit a one-out double, went to third on a passed ball and scored on an Austin Harclerode ground out. Andrew Parker was hit by a pitch with two outs and Steve Rice went deep to make it 5-0. In the fourth, Dominic Fratantuono hit a two-out solo homer to make 6-0. In the fifth, Harclerode doubled with one out and scored on a two-out single by Rice. Wychock and Ben Winter followed with singles to bring Rice home for an 8-0 lead.

After reliever Brandon Lindsey threw a pair of scoreless innings, Towson got back on the board in the eighth. With one out, Natoli singled and Jake Kalish couldn't hold onto Pat Fitzgerald's fly ball to deep right. With runners on second and third, Harclerode doubled to make it 10-0. Sean Cabrera came on in relief and he hit Parker and gave up a single to Rice to load the bases before Wychock grounded out to make it 11-0.

Down by double figures, the only drama remaining was whether Tison would extend his hitting streak. In the bottom of the eighth, after a Cook walk, Tison laced a 3-1 pitch up the middle for his lone hit of the game. With runners on the corners, Mike Bronakoski came into the game and he needed help from Ben Winter, who made a terrific diving catch in center to rob Dan Schafferman of an extra-base hit. Cook scored on the sacrifice fly and Blaise Fernandez followed with a two-run homer to make it 11-3. Shane Davis walked, Nick Allen singled, Danny Lyons was hit by a pitch to load the bases, and Jake Kalish was hit by a pitch to bring home a run making it 11-4.

But the Tigers (19-20-1, 10-9 CAA) got a run back in the ninth when Brian Wyman doubled, Brandon Gonella singled, and Pat Fitzgerald hit a sacrifice fly to make it 12-4. The Patriots (17-27-1, 4-18 CAA) and Tigers continue their series on Saturday with first pitch scheduled for 2 p.m.

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