Rider 8, Lafayette 7

Courtesy: Rider Sports Information
Release: May 07, 2008
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David Hayes had three hits Wednesday
Courtesy: Peter G. Borg (Rider University)

College Baseball

Rider University 8, Lafayette College 7


LAWRENCEVILLE—Senior David Hayes (Sunrise, Fla./American Heritage) had three hits to lead Rider to a come-from-behind win over Lafayette Wednesday. The victory snapped a five-game losing streak.


“It’s just fun to win one,” said Rider head coach Barry Davis. “We put ourselves in a hole early, but we won the game, and that’s the goal. It’s good for the guys to know we can win a game. You are never as bad as you think you are, and we needed something like this to get us going again.”


Trailing 6-1, Rider (25-21) scored four runs in the sixth inning on three hits, including back-to-back doubles by junior Sean Olson (Vineland, N.J./St. Augustine Prep) and D. Hayes, a sacrifice fly by junior Maurice Williams (Ocean, N.J./Monmouth Regional) and an RBI bunt single by freshman John Ralston (Annandale, Va./Paul VI) to cut the lead to 6-5.


“Ralston did that on his own,” Davis said. “He told David (runner on third) he was doing it and executed it about as good as you can. His intent was to score the run but then he beat out the bunt for a hit.”


Ralston had two hits and two RBI for the Broncs.


Rider came back and scored three runs in the seventh inning on three hits, including an RBI single by D. Hayes to take an 8-6 lead. “We got a couple of big hits,” Davis said.  “Olson had a big hit, David Hayes had a couple of big hits and Mo did a good job.”


Olson had two of Rider’s 11 hits and along with Williams each had two RBI. Olson now has 104 career RBI, 15th highest ever at Rider, and his total of 46 RBI this year is the most by a Bronc since the 2004 season. “Batting third or fourth in the line up, getting RBIs is my job, so I feel it is pretty important for me to do that,” Olson said.  “I’m always trying to get RBIs.”


D. Hayes led off the second inning with a triple and scored Rider’s first run on an RBI single by Williams. “I got some good pitches to hit today,” D. Hayes said. “It was big to get a win today after falling down early. The past few games guys were hitting the ball hard, they just weren’t falling. I think we showed some pride today.”


D. Hayes was a home run shy of the cycle. “I’ve never hit for the cycle,” D. Hayes said. “I wasn’t really thinking about it. The guys in the dugout were joking around about it, but I wasn’t thinking about it.” 


Junior James Hayes (Sunrise, Fla./Piper) came in from right field to pitch the final one and one-third innings, striking out two for his eighth save of the season and the 23rd of his career.


Freshman Mike Thomas (Forest Hill, Md./Fallston) pitched one and two-thirds innings of relief for the win, his team-high sixth. “Thomas did a good job,” Davis said.


Sophomore Brian Herman (Levittown, Pa./Conwell-Egan) pitched two and two-thirds innings of shutout relief after Lafayette (25-23) had taken a 6-1 lead. “I thought Herman did a great job,” Davis said.


The Broncs travel to Le Moyne for a three-game non-conference series this weekend. “Hopefully this game will allow us to carry some momentum into Le Moyne, which is always a tough place to play,” Davis said 


“We were playing pretty well before the recent games, so it was important for us to get back on the winning track,” Olson said. “This way we can travel to Le Moyne with a little bit more confidence.”


The final home game of the season is May 13 against La Salle, and the regular season closes with a three-game MAAC series at Saint Peter’s May 16-17. “Getting ready for Saint Peter’s, that is our main focus,” Olson said, “but we’re taking it game by game. Obviously we want to win the games before Saint Peter’s and it feels good to get back on track.”


Rider is currently in fourth place in the MAAC (12-9).  Rider hosts the four-team MAAC Championship tournament May 22-24 at Waterfront Park.





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