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Baseball Scores Season-High 22 Runs in Home Opener
Courtesy: George Mason Athletics
Release: 02/25/2011

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The George Mason baseball team scored a season-high 22 runs while getting strong starting pitching and solid defense as the Patriots won their home opener, beating Long Island, 22-6. The Patriots got five home runs from four different players, taking full advantage of the 30 mph winds to win their third straight.

Mason scored in six of the eight innings in which it batted and had multiple runs five different times as Shane Davis had the first multi-homer game of his career and Zack Helgeson and Danny Lyons added long balls as well. Davis was 2 for 4 with four RBI, Helgeson was 3 for 5 with five RBI and Lyons was 2 for 5 with five RBI. Dan Schafferman was 4 for 6 with four runs and four RBI as every starter in the Mason lineup had a hit. Chris Cook tied his own school record when he was hit by a pitch three times. He scored four runs.

A lead-off single and a one-out double produced the first run of the game for Long Island but Mason responded in the bottom of the first as Schafferman hit a two-out single, Helgeson followed with a walk and Davis went deep to center. In the second, Mason put six on the board as Jeremy Haas led things off with a single, took third on a balk and scored on a Lyons ground out. Nick Allen and Chris Cook followed with singles and after a wild pitch, the pair scored on a Brig Tison single against a drawn-in infield. Schafferman followed with a single and Helgeson homered to make it 9-1.

In the third, Cook was hit by a pitch, stole second and scored on a Tison double. The Patriots put seven on the board in the fourth as Davis hit a solo homer, then Blaise Fernandez singled and Haas walked and Lyons followed with an RBI single to make it 12-1. Nick Allen 's sacrifice fly made it a 12-run lead. Later in the inning Schafferman had a two-run single to plate Lyons and Cook, who was hit by a pitch, and Helgeson had a two-run single to bring home Schafferman and Tison, who had walked.

The Blackbirds scored once in the fifth on a leadoff homer but that was all starter Chris O'Grady allowed. He picked up the win to go to 1-1 on the year after allowing two runs on six hits with six strikeouts and two walks in six innings of work.

Mason added three runs in the seventh, when Lyons homered to bring home pinch hitter Mick Foley , who had walked, and pinch hitter Jordan Hill , who had singled. Long Island scored in the top of the eighth on a leadoff double, a balk and a sacrifice fly but Mason got two back in the bottom of the eight when Schafferman homered to bring home Cook, who had walked. A two-run homer in the top of the ninth by Diego Perez made it 22-5 and Pete Leonello tripled and scored on a Sam Sciamarelli single before Brandon Lindsey came on to get the final two outs in relief of Michael Bowie .

The Patriots and Blackbirds continue their series with a doubleheader on Saturday at Noon, consisting of a nine-inning game followed by a seven-inning contest.