April 23, 2013
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - After delivering a game-winning single in the ninth against Virginia Tech on Saturday, Anthony Papio continued his clutch play with a two-out two-RBI single in the seventh to give Maryland (22-20) a lead it would not relinquish in 5-3 victory over Liberty on Tuesday at Bob "Turtle" Smith Stadium.
Papio stepped to the plate in the seventh with score tied at three and the bases full of Terrapins. The redshirt freshman smacked a 2-1 pitch back up the middle plating Kevin Martir and LaMonte Wade to give the Terps a two-run lead.
Maryland turned the lead over to Bobby Ruse, who entered in the seventh inning and pitched a perfect inning. In the eighth, Ruse set the Flames (22-20) down in order including a swinging strikeout of Alex Close to close out the frame.
Kevin Mooney relieved Ruse in the ninth and the freshman shut the door for his team-leading sixth save of the season. Ruse improved to 4-0; all of his wins have come out of the bullpen.
Offensively, Martir, Blake Schmit each finished with two hits. Papio finished 1-for-4 with two RBI, while Jack Cleary hit his first home run of the season. In the last 11 games, Papio has a team-best 12 RBI including six in his last four games.
Trailing 1-0 in the fifth, Maryland tied the game on a RBI triple by Hagel. With Charlie White at first, Hagel turned on a 1-1 pitch and hit it off the top of the padded wall in left center. The ball caromed off the wall allowing White to score and Hagel to move to third. Hagel scored two pitches later as a hard shot by Wade went under the glove of the shortstop to score the go-ahead run.
Liberty regained the lead in the next half-inning. The Flames put runners on first and second with one out to chase Terrapin starter Alex Robinson from the game. Jared Price entered from the bullpen and gave up back-to-back RBI singles as the Flames took a 3-2 lead.
In the bottom of the sixth with two outs, Jack Cleary connected on a 1-0 pitch and blasted down the left-field line for his first home run of the season and the second of his career. Cleary's solo homer tied the game at three setting up Papio's big hit in the seventh.
For the third consecutive start, Robinson took a no decision despite a solid outing. The freshman lefty gave up two earned runs on four hits over 5-1/3 innings with three strikeouts.
Maryland returns to the field on Wednesday as the Terps travel to Towson to take on the Tigers at 3:30 p.m.