SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University baseball team split its two games series with the State University of New York at Oswego on Saturday. After falling in the first game 13-3 the Sea Gulls found themselves down once again in the second. Starring down a 1-1 count in the bottom of the ninth trailing 12-10 Jay Perry launched a walk-off two-run home run to right field to deliver a 13-12 win and snap a four-game losing skid.
Salisbury (3-4) jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom half of the first inning in game two. Pete Grasso, who would also collect the win on the mound for this game, grounded out to short stop to score Kevin Dean.
After falling behind in the top of the fourth 2-1 the offense rallied back in the bottom half of the inning to take the lead right back. Grasso and Kyle Canavan led off the inning with back-to-back singles for the maroon and gold to give Jack Barry runners of the corners with one out. Barry came through for Salisbury delivering a two RBI single to center field, plating both Grasso and Canavan.
The lead didn't last very long however, as Oswego State (1-1) launched a grand slam to right field to retake the lead 6-4.
After Salisbury battled back once again to take the lead in the bottom half of the fifth the Lakers responded with another long ball in the top of the seventh to climb back on top 8-7.
With the game tied at eight apiece the teams went into the ninth inning looking to gain an edge over the other. Oswego struck first plating four runs in the top of the inning to go up 12-8.
Down to their final three outs the Sea Gulls needed to manufacture four runs for a tie and five for a win and had scored only one run since the fifth inning. Senior catcher Tom LaBriola led off the inning with a double to center to give Salisbury a runner in scoring position. In back-to-back at-bats Barry and pinch hitter Simon Palenchar earned walks to load the bases for Scott Ardoin.
Ardoin slapped a single into right field to plate both LaBriola and Palenchar, cutting the deficit to just two, 12-10.
The Ardoin single the way for Perry who stepped to the plate with a chance to win. After a pitching change by the Lakers, Palenchar scored on a wild pitch cutting the lead to one with the tying run on second. With a 1-1 count Perry launched a two-run blast to right-center field and deliver a much needed win for the Sea Gulls.
The home run capped a five run comeback and a game in which the maroon and gold needed to come back on four separate occasions.
Perry finished the game 2-for-4 with two RBI and one run scored. Five other Gulls finished the day with two hits while Ardoin led the team with three RBI.
Jeff Oster started the game going six innings pitched allowing just four hits but seven runs while striking out four, earning no decision. Grasso got the win going three innings pitched allowing just one earned run and recording three strikeouts.
The Sea Gulls fell 13-3 in the first game of the afternoon with Grasso accounting for a third of the offense launching a solo shot down the right field line that just snuck past the foul ball pole.
Salisbury travels to Johns Hopkins University on Wednesday March 1. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.