Despite playing in enemy territory, the Mariners felt right at home. College of Marin baseball "hosted" the Laney College Eagles on Thursday in Oakland. Though the game was played at Laney College, Marin served as the home team and emerged with a 6-3 victory. The sophomore pitching duo of Nicholas Roth and Michael Benz combined for a complete game while freshmen Dionathan Cornet and Anthony Pomilia each had three run homers to power the offense.
The Mariners' offense took awhile to wake up in the game as they fell behind early on. Roth hurled a scoreless first inning but could not keep the Eagles down in the top of the second.
The leadoff hitter reached on an error, stole second and scored on a single for a 1-0 lead. Marin had a chance to tie or take the lead in the third as they had the bases loaded with one out, but back to back strikeouts ended the threat.
Laney benefited from errors in the fourth as the leadoff hitter singled and scored on a pair of errors before a single and sacrifice fly put the visitors on top 3-0.
Roth did well to work around the Mariners' fielding mistakes and kept the Eagles off the board in the sixth and seventh innings.
Marin took advantage of defensive lapses in the seventh to take the lead. With two down, Casey Armusewicz struck out but reached on an error by the catcher. Randy Fernandez pinch ran and stole second before Conor Bardue worked a walk. Dionathan Cornet strode to the plate and swatted a mighty home run to put College of Marin on top 6-3.
Benz took over on the mound to start the eighth and got a one two three inning off of Laney. The Mariners did not score in the eighth and Benz stayed on the hill for the final frame. He ran into a bit of trouble as the first two hitters reached, but he managed to induce a ground out, a strikeout and a flyout to end the game.
Roth earned the win with seven innings on the mound. He allowed three runs, all unearned, while striking out five. Benz worked two scoreless innings to earn the save, his second of the season. Berg and Armusewicz each collected a pair of hits while Pomilia and Cornet each had a three-run homer to their credit. Marin did struggle in the field, as they committed six errors, but it did not have a deleterious effect on the final score.
The rubber match of the series is on deck for the Mariners, they play as the road team in Oakland, at Laney with first pitch scheduled for 10:30am on Friday, March 22nd.