FAIRFAX, Va. - A one out, two-run home run blast from senior
designated hitter Zack Helgeson in the bottom of the ninth propelled the George
Mason baseball team to a 6-4 win over Hofstra on Friday afternoon at Spuhler
After Hofstra (4-8, 0-1) tied the game at 4-4 in the top of
the ninth inning on an RBI double by senior outfielder Danny Poma, the stage
was set for Helgeson's heroics in the bottom half of the inning.
The Pride sent junior righty Jared Rogers to the mound, and
he started the inning by getting Mason (9-4, 1-0) senior third baseman Brig
Tison to fly out to left. Senior outfielder Dan Schafferman then stepped to the
plate and hit a line drive to right field, putting a runner on base for
Helgeson, who drilled the ball deep to left field for his fifth home run of the
season to give Mason the 6-4 conference win.
Mason fell behind early for the third-consecutive game but
once again was able to recover for the victory. The Patriots gave up a run in
the top of the first inning as Poma hit a one out solo shot to right center to
give the Pride (4-8, 0-1) a 1-0 lead.
However, Mason responded with two runs of its own in the
home half of the first inning. Junior second baseman Chris Cook started the game with a
single through the right side, and after Tison popped up Schafferman hit a
single up the middle to leave runners at first and second. Both Cook and
Schafferman advanced a base on a wild pitch, allowing Helgeson to drive in both
runners on a hard-hit double to right center for a 2-1 Patriot advantage.
Mason added another run in the second with the bases loaded
and nobody out. Cook grounded into a double play, but it was hit hard enough to
allow sophomore first baseman Mick Foley to score from third, extending the lead
Hofstra tied the game in the top of the fifth with an RBI
double from second baseman Matt Ford and an RBI single from first baseman Jared
Hammer to leave the scoreboard at 3-3, but Mason once again replied with a run
of its own in in the bottom half of the inning with an RBI single from redshirt
sophomore Josh Leemhuis to grab the lead back, 4-3.
Helgeson finished the day 2-for-5 at the plate, driving in
four of the Patriots' six runs. Schafferman was a perfect 5-for-5 at the plate
with two runs scored and Leemhuis was 2-for-4 with the other Mason RBI.
Sophomore Jake Kalish (2-0) earned the win in relief,
throwing 3.0 innings and allowing three hits, one earned run, one walk and one
strikeout. Redshirt sophomore Anthony Montefusco started the game for Mason and
left with the lead but was straddled with the no decision after going 5.0
innings with eight hits, three earned runs, two walks and four strikeouts. Sophomore
Neight Hoffa worked 1.0 innings, striking out two.
Poma led the way for Hofstra, going 4-for-5 with two RBI's
and two runs scored.
Rogers (0-3) took the loss, throwing just 0.1 innings and
giving up the game-winning home run. Starter David D'Errico lasted 6.0 innings
with 11 hits, four earned runs, one walk and four strikeouts, while Cody
Normand and Joe Burg each threw 1.0 innings of relief.
The Patriots and the Pride square off again tomorrow afternoon
at 2:00 pm from Spuhler Field.