LANTANA, FL- The Merrimack baseball team suffered an 8-6 loss to #19 Southern Connecticut in a 12-inning battle Monday to close out its training trip to Florida. The Warriors drop to 9-8 on the season while the Owls improve to 14-3 overall.
Tim Curran (Weymouth, MA) led Merrimack with a 4-for-5 effort at the plate with a stolen base. Casey Cotter (North Hampton, NH) landed three hits on the day and drove in a run. Joe Mantoni (Northbridge, MA) collected a pair of hits and three RBIs. Mark O'Flynn (Ipswich, MA) added a pair of base knocks while Alex Ciullo (Fall River, MA) picked up one.
"It was a great college baseball game today. We battled back from four runs down twice against great pitching," said head coach Jim Martin. "Both teams made some great plays on defense and came up with clutch pitching. We look forward to using the momentum from this game and the entire trip to Florida as the season goes on."
Southern Connecticut scored twice in the first two innings to hold a 4-0 lead early on in the contest. The Warriors responded with two runs before the Owls answered with two more to restore their lead to four, 6-2.
Merrimack pushed across four runs in the home half of the sixth inning to knot the game at 6-6.
Southern Connecticut threatened to reclaim the lead in the top of the ninth. The Owls advanced a runner to third with one out before O'Flynn threw out the go-ahead run at the plate after making a catch in centerfield to retire the side.
Southern Connecticut plated a pair of runs in the top of the 12th inning to grab an 8-6 edge. The Warriors strung together back-to-back singles with one out but a double play ended the game as the Owls hung on for their seventh-straight win.
Merrimack will resume play in New England with a tilt at Assumption, March 22.