ITHACA, N.Y. – The Harvard baseball team (19-19, 9-8 Ivy) fell in back-to-back games against the Cornell Big Red (11-17-1, 6-8) at Hoy Field today. The Crimson would open both games with a 4-0 lead, but ended up dropping decisions 10-8 and 7-4.
Ben Skinner and Jake Suddleson had decent days at the plate, Skinner going three-for-six with two extra base hits and five total bases while Suddleson connected on four of nine attempts and drove in three while tagging six bases of his own.
On the mound, Buddy Hayward led the pitching staff with seven strikeouts in 4.1 innings, tying his career high. Harvard ace Noah Zavolas took the mound for the third time in a week, grinding out five innings worth of work with six strikeouts to show.
Game One: Harvard 8, Cornell 10 (9 Innings)
Despite taking an early 4-0 lead, Harvard was plagued by errors and was unable to overcome a strong Cornell offense in game one. Both Patrick Robinson and Jake Suddleson had sturdy performances behind the dish, each going three-for-five with Suddleson knocking in three RBI in the process. Austin Black also contributed two RBI while Hunter Bigge connected on two of four attempts.
Noah Zavolas made his 10th start of the season and threw six strikeouts in five innings while allowing just one earned run. Jack Mahala and John MacLean made brief appearances on the hill before Garrett Rupp closed out the final 2.1 innings with one strikeout through nine batters with no earned runs allowed.
Harvard put its first three runners on before Jake Suddleson hit a bases clearing double up the left line. Suddleson would go on to score on a wild pitch, putting the Crimson up 4-0 in the first.
On the back end, Cornell took a run back on a sacrifice fly from Will Simoneit.
On the other end of the inning, Harvard committed a costly error that initiated three runs, cutting the Crimson's lead to one run a third of the way through game one.
Cornell took its first lead of the game in the fourth when Will Simoneit doubled down the right field line, allowing the runners on second and third to score.
After back to back singles in the sixth, the Big Red went up three on a single through the right side and a two-run double to left field. Cornell added another score on a sacrifice fly from Jason Apostle.
Game Two: Harvard 4, Cornell 7 (9 Innings)
Cornell was able to take game two in a similar fashion, charging back after Harvard took a 4-0 lead to open the game. Ben Skinner continued his dominating performance this season at the plate, going two-for-four, both hits being doubles.
Kevin Stone led off on the mound for the Crimson, pitching 3.2 innings before Buddy Hayward came in for relief and put up seven strikeouts in 4.1 innings. Hayward allowed just one hit, no walks and no runs through 14 batters.
The Big Red got two back on a Will Somoneit double down the left field line and a Josh Arndt ground out to short stop.
Cornell's offense put them back within one for the second game in a row when Dale Wickham doubled to right center that allowed Kyle Gallagher to tag three bases, making the score 4-3 Harvard.
In the bottom of the fourth, Cornell came storming back to take the lead off back to back extra base hits to the left field wall, sending in two runs to take a 5-4 lead. The Big Red would take another two scores on a fielding error and wild pitch for a three-run lead heading into the fifth and it would hold that lead for the remainder of the game.
The Crimson will return to the diamond tomorrow to finish out the series with the Big Red. Due to incoming weather, first pitch has been moved to 11 a.m.