POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y., May 14, 2008 – Redshirt junior Brett Sellers (Greencastle, Pa./Greencastle-Antrim) matched his career high with four hits and freshman Turner Phelps (Roanoke, Va./Lord Botetourt) went seven innings to lead James Madison University past Marist College 10-3 in the final non-conference game of the season for both teams on Wednesday afternoon at McCann Baseball Field.
JMU, which entered the game having lost five of six, improved to 32-16 on the season. The Dukes improved to 15-6 on the road and finished the season 14-8 in non-conference action. Marist lost for the sixth time in seven games and fell to 19-26.
Phelps improved to 6-0 on the season after allowing three runs, two earned, in seven innings. He struck out five and limited Marist to six hits and a walk while retiring the last eight batters he faced in order. It was his fourth outing of at least seven innings in his last six appearances. Freshman James Weiner (Charlottesville, Va./St. Anne’s-Belfield) finished the game with two scoreless innings.
Sellers posted his third four-hit game of the season with two doubles while driving in three. Sophomore Alex Foltz (Mathias, W.Va./East Hardy) also reached base four times with two singles, a double, a walk, and three runs scored. Sophomore Matt Browning (Mystic, Conn./Fitch) doubled, homered, walked, and scored twice. Redshirt senior Joe Lake (Elkridge, Md./Long Reach) was 2-for-5 with two runs and an RBI. Freshman David Herbek (Haymarket, Va./Battlefield) doubled, walked, was hit by a pitch, and scored twice.
Freshman Brendan Chapin (South Weymouth, Mass./Catholic Memorial) took the loss to fall to 3-2. He allowed five runs on five hits while lasting just an inning as the first of six Marist pitchersr on the day.
Freshman Matthew Howard (Philadelphia, Pa./La Salle College H.S.) was 2-for-4 and scored twice for the Red Foxes. Junior Kyle Meyer (East Greenbush, N.Y./Columbia) also had two hits and scored the other run.
JMU loaded the bases with one out in the first on singles by Lake and Sellers along with a Steven Caseres (New City, N.Y./St. Joseph Regional) walk. Freshman McKinnon Langston (Tallahassee, Fla./North Florida Christian) then hit an RBI groundout to bring in the first run of the game.
After the Dukes escaped a two-on, no-out jam in the bottom of the first, Browning nailed the second pitch he saw over the fence in left field to lead off the second inning with his seventh homer of the season. The Dukes proceeded to load the bases with no outs to chase starter Brendan Chapin. After an out, Sellers lined a two-run double down the line in left for a 4-0 lead. Caseres added a sacrifice fly for the second out.
Marist got its first run in the third after a leadoff single by Howard was followed by a one-out triple by freshman Ricky Pacione (Newburgh, N.Y./Newburgh Free Academy) on a deep fly ball to right center.
The Dukes put runners on the corners with no outs in the fourth. Lake lifted a high fly into foul ground with short stop Richard Curylo (Staten Island, N.Y./Monsignor Farrell) making a running grab by the Marist bullpen for the out. Herbek tagged up and scored from third but was later called out on an appeal for leaving early.
The Red Foxes put on a pair of runners on singles in the fifth. A fly out moved a runner to third with Howard then scoring on a ground ball that Langston missed for an error. Sophomore Ryan Gauck (Clifton Park, N.Y./Shenendehowa) then singled up the middle for the second run of the inning to cut the score to 5-3.
Browning led off the JMU sixth with a double off the wall just inside the left field foul pole, missing his second home run by just three feet. Junior Brett Garner (Burke, Va./Lake Braddock) sacrificed Browning to third and Herbek ripped a double inside the third-base bag for the RBI. Foltz then doubled to a similar spot down the leftfield line to plate the seventh JMU run. Lake laced another ball to the left field line to score a run but was thrown out trying to stretch to a double. That proved costly after Sellers lined a double to the wall, the fourth double of the frame.
In the eighth, Foltz walked to lead off the inning, moved to second on a groundout, and stole third base. Sellers then singled to center to drive in his third run of the day on his fourth hit. Sellers stole second and came around on a double by sophomore Mike Fabiaschi (Torrington, Conn./Torrington), breaking out of an 0-for-20 slump with his first double of the season.
JMU will now continue further into the northeast to Boston for its final Colonial Athletic Association series at Northeastern University. Thursday’s opener will begin at 2 p.m. in Brookline.