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Kropa's Eighth-Inning RBI Lifts Baseball Over Keene State College, 2-1

Box Score/Play-by-Play

SPRINGFIELD, Mass., March 28, 2007 – Springfield College freshman Joey Kropa (Cranford, N.J.) hit a two-out RBI single to left field in the bottom half of the eighth inning to break a one-all tie as the Pride edged non-conference foe Keene State College, 2-1, this afternoon in baseball action at Berry-Allen Field.

With today's victory, Head Coach Mark Simeone has earned his 200th career win at Springfield College. Simeone, who is now in his 11th season under the direction of the Pride and 15th overall as a collegiate head baseball coach, has won 267 total games in his career and an even 200 in an SC uniform.

SC junior lefty Joe Carlos (Wilbraham, Mass.) started on the mound for the Pride, allowing just one hit in six complete innings of work to go along with three strikeouts. Senior right-hander Derek Hodder (Hamden, Conn.) then came on in relief for the Pride, allowing just one hit and one unearned run in three innings of work for his first victory of the season (1-1). SC improves to 2-8 overall on the season with the win, as the Owls of Keene State fall to 9-6.

Keene State junior Phil Mabey pitched an outstanding game for the Owls despite being tagged with the loss. The righty tossed seven and two-thirds innings, giving up just one hit and two unearned runs to fall to 0-1 on the season. Mabey fanned nine Pride batters and did not allow a hit until the bottom of the eighth.

SC opened the scoring with a run in the bottom half of the third inning off a wild pitch, plating junior Ryan Hingston (Windsor, Vt.) who had previously reached on an error. The game was locked at 1-0 until the top of the seventh inning, when Owl junior Ryan Jones opened the frame with a walk. After a sacrifice bunt and a pop out, junior Greg Ford singled to second base, eventually scoring Jones because of a Pride error on the play.

In the bottom of the eighth inning, Keene State’s Mabey retired the first two batters, but an Owl error prolonged the inning and put senior Chris Stack (Albany, N.Y.) on base. After a Stack stolen base, his third of the season, Kropa drove in the senior with a shot to left field for the eventual game-winner. Hodder then came out for SC in the bottom of the ninth and retired Keene State in order for the victory.

The Pride will next travel to Waltham, Mass., for yet another non-conference game tomorrow afternoon, March 29th, for a 3:00 p.m. start at Brandeis University.

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