Rider University 9, Rutgers University 3
LAWRENCEVILLE-Sophomore Greg Fazio (Far Hills/Ridge) knocked in five runs to lead Rider to victory over Rutgers Tuesday afternoon.
Fazio and freshman James Locklear (Hamilton, NJ/Steinert) each had three of Rider's 10 hits.
The Broncs (11-9) scored four runs on five hits in the second inning to take a 4-0 lead, led by Fazio's RBI single and a two-run double by Locklear. "We got off to a great start," said Rider head coach Barry Davis. "We got some big hits early in the ball game. This is a good win for us."
Fazio hit a two-run single in the third inning to make it 7-0 and hit a two-run home run in the eighth inning for the final score. "I felt good at the plate today," said Fazio, who is batting .750 (nine for 12 with eight RBI) over his last four games. "Recently I've been trying to simplify things at the plate."
"Greg's swinging the bat well right now," Davis said of his sophomore second baseman. "He's getting good swings at the plate. He's not trying to pull everything. When good hitters are on they often hit the ball the other way."
Rutgers (8-12) did not get a hit until the fifth inning and did not get on the scoreboard until scoring three runs in the sixth inning on two hits and three walks.
Rider junior Jerry Mulderig (Langhorne, PA/Council Rock South) was the first of nine Bronc hurlers on the day, earning the win with two innings pitched, allowing just one walk. "Jerry was good," Davis said, "and the rest of the pitchers held down the fort the rest of the ball game. With just one game in the middle of the week you want to get guys some work."
Rider sophomore Justin Thomas (Richboro, PA/Council Rock South) had two hits and scored three runs.
Rider lost 5-0 at Rutgers last March and also lost at Rutgers in 2010. Rider and Rutgers did not meet in 2011. Rider beat Rutgers in 2009 at Rider. Rutgers leads the all-time series, which began in 1961, 38-27.
The Scarlet Knights have not had a home game yet this year. "Rutgers has been playing really well," Davis said of the BIG EAST Knights, who just won a conference series with Louisville. "They play a tough schedule. Be always know that when we play Rutgers we have to pay our best."
The Broncs host Fairfield Friday at 3pm and Saturday in a 12 noon doubleheader in the first MAAC series of the season. "We've got a big series coming up," Davis said. "They were a MAAC playoff team last year so hopefully we can keep swinging the bats and play well."
"We're all excited about this weekend," Fazio said. "We want to be a force to be reckoned with in the MAAC this year and it all starts this weekend."