NEWARK, N.J. -- Senior righthander Michael Garcia throttled No. 6 Kean for seven innings as Rutgers-Newark collected 11 hits in a 6-3 New Jersey Athletic Conference upset in Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium. Kean entered the fray ranked sixth in the latest NCBWA Top 25 Poll.
Garcia (3-1) scattered six hits while walking four and striking out two before being pulled in the top of the eighth after walking the first two batters. Freshman righthander Chas Bohannon came on to strike out two of the three batters that he faced to get the Scarlet Raiders out of the jam before sophomore shortstop Ryan MacFarlane earned his first career save in the ninth. After hitting the first batter that he faced, MacFarlane notched a strike out and a pair of infield grounders to close out the game.
MacFarlane ripped a 2-run double to left field in the third inning to give the Raiders a 2-1 lead while he also stole two bases in the fifth inning before scoring.
After MacFarlane reached on a fielder's choice in the fifth, he stole second ahead of a walk issued to senior first baseman Vin Troisi. MacFarlane then stole third with Troisi moving into scoring position on a wild pitch on the same play. Junior leftfielder Michael Murray tied the score at 3-3 with an RBI single through the right side before Troisi came home with the winning run when the Cougars failed to turn a double play on a ground ball to the shortstop by sophomore rightfielder Cameron Dias.
Senior designated hitter Kevin Olah manufactured an insurance run in the sixth with a lead-off walk and a stolen base ahead of a single by freshman catcher Josh Cote which moved him to third. A ground ball to second base by second baseman Gerry Patrizio plated Olah to push the Rutgers-Newark lead to 5-2.
After an error led to a Cougar run in the top of the seventh, the Raiders got back-to-back singles from Murray and Dias to set up another run. Junior Jason McCluskey, who ran for Murray at first base, and Dias pulled a double steal. The Kean catcher threw the ball away down the left field line trying to get McCluskey at third to plate the final run.
Troisi, Murray, Dias and Cote had two hits apiece for Rutgers-Newark (7-16, NJAC 3-4) which took its second consecutive league win while Kean (18-7, NJAC 3-4) fell into a sixth place tie with five other teams in the tightly-bunched conference standing.
The Cougars got two hits each from sophomore catcher D.J. Ross and sophomore catcher Chris Amato. Ross had an RBI single in the seventh.
A double by sophomore first baseman Sal Taormina in the second set up squeeze bunt RBI single by senior centerfielder Shane Alvarez before a nifty double play saved Garcia from further damage. With runners on the corners, Alvarez was thrown out at second while trying to steal by Cote and MacFarlane threw out junior third baseman Andy Lopez at the plate as he tried to come home.
Alvarez rounded the bases to give Kean a brief 2-1 lead in the fifth. After reaching on a catcher's interference call and moving to second on a sacrifice bunt, Alvarez stole third and scored on a wild pitch.
The Cougars final run came in the seventh when an infield error put a runner on first ahead of a 2-out RBI single to right center field by Ross.