Broncs to Host Lafayette Wednesday
The Broncs will take a break from final exams to host Lafayette College Wednesday afternoon at 3:30pm on the Sonny Pittaro Field.
Today is a reading day so Rider (16-27, 9-9 MAAC) is between exams and between Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference series with Saint Peter's (8-7 MAAC) last weekend in Jersey City and Siena (7-8 MAAC) this coming weekend at Rider.
The Broncs took two of three from the SPC Peacocks and need to win the last two remaining series to qualify for the four-team MAAC Championship tournament. Rider plays at Iona (6-9 MAAC) May 11-12.
The final weekend of the MAAC regular season, May 18-19, is Rider's bye week, as the Broncs will host Longwood for a four game series.
On Wednesday the Broncs will send freshman David Hafer (Pine Grove, PA) to the mound to face the Leopards (14-32-1), who with a victory over Bucknell Sunday improved to 7-13 in the Patriot League and qualified for their four-team conference tournament.
Hafer earned his first win last week with a five inning performance against Saint Joseph's in Rider's 7-5 victory.
Both Lafayette and Rider possess a pitcher who is the current conference Rookie of the Week.
For the Broncs, Zach Mawson (Magnolia, DE/Caesar Rodney) was named the MAAC Rookie of the Week. Mawson appeared in three games last week and compiled a win and two saves. He also started a game in right field and compiled a hit, a run scored and a run batted in. In seven innings on the mound last week, Mawson allowed just one run on three hits while striking out two. He earned the save in Rider's 7-5 win at Saint Joseph's, he earned the save the next day in Rider's 10-9 win over Princeton and he earned the win on Saturday in Rider's extra inning MAAC win over Saint Peter's.
For the Leopards, Toby Schwartz was named the Patriot League Rookie of the Week for his victory over Bucknell.
The Leopards have a .232 team batting average and have scored 177 runs this season (3.7 per game). The Broncs have a .263 batting average and have scored 201 runs (4.7 per game).
Sophomore Nick Crescenzo (Hammonton, NJ/Hammonton) had three hits in the first game of the Saint Peter's doubleheader, giving him 100 for his career in just his 82nd game started. Crescenzo enters Wednesday's game against Lafayette with 101 hits.
Junior Adam Wayman (Wilkes-Barre, Pa./G.A.R. Memorial), who has played first base and outfield this year in addition to his normal third base, enters Wednesday's game with 148 career hits, 42nd most ever at Rider.
Last week Rider freshman Justin Thomas (Richboro, PA/Council Rock South) collected seven hits in five games for the 4-1 Broncs with a slugging percentage of .579 for the week. Thomas batted .454 in the all-important three-game MAAC series with five hits. His RBI single gave Rider a 3-2 lead in the 10th inning of the 4-3 win over Saint Peter's.
The Broncs have been playing without their top two hitters, outfielders Brandon Cotten and Ian Lindsay. Cotten (Wiconisco, Pa./Williams Valley) leads Rider with 28 runs scored and has 44 hits in 36 games but is out with a foot injury. Lindsay missed the last few games with a concussion and is Rider's leading hitter at .315.
Lafayette defeated Rider 6-3 earlier this season in Easton on March 6. The Broncs defeated Lafayette 8-7 in Flemington, NJ last year. Rider had defeated Lafayette five times in the last four years before the loss earlier this year.
The former East Coast Conference rivals have met 76 times since the series began in 1947, with Rider winning 40.
The Broncs look to get 41 in their exam on Wednesday.