Rensselaer takes home Liberty League title following 7-0 win against Union
LOUDINVILLE, N.Y. -- RPI sophomore pitcher Jared Jensen pitched a complete-game shutout, allowing just five hits to lead the Engineers (28-13) to their first Liberty League title since 2008 with a 7-0 win against Union (26-13) at Siena Field.
RPI's Jonny Rio went 2-for-5 with an RBI and two runs scored to lead the Engineer offense and was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament. Tim LeSuer also had two hits and Michael Croke drove in two runs for RPI, which scored three runs in the top of the first inning to take control of the contest
Union's Andrews Goetz went 2-for-3 to lead the Dutchmen offense and starter Jamie Faber went four innings, allowing seven hits and five runs (four earned), walking two and striking out three. Junior Andrew Beaule relieved Faber, allowing one run on two hits in 3.1 innings before giving way to Seth Roberts, who finished the eighth inning.
Senior Quinn Rhoda allowed one run on two hits in the ninth inning.
RPI got to Faber early as Tyler Listing led off the game with a single, and after Andrew Kalish walked, LeSuer singled to load the bases. Rio's run scoring single gave the Engineers a 1-0 lead. Shane Matthews drove a run in with a fielder's choice, and Croke followed with an RBI single to make it 3-0 RPI before Union's first turn at bat.
Meanwhile, Jensen cruised through the Union lineup, allowing just one runner to reach second base after the Dutchmen threatened with runners on second and third base and one out in the bottom of the third inning and senior Tyler Heck at the plate.
Jensen got out of the jam by inducing a fielder's choice, with Goetz thrown out at home plate and a groundout to the next batter, Jeff Grasso, to keep RPI in front 3-0.
The Engineers tacked on runs in the top half of the third and fourth innings on RBI groundouts by Croke and Listing to take a 5-0 lead.
Eric Kozak had an RBI single in the top of the eighth inning and Nick Palmiero drove in a run in the ninth inning with a single to center field to give Jensen more support to close out the game and send RPI to the NCAA tournament.