One win down. The two-seed Rhode Island Rams rallied from a 3-0 deficit to top Fordham 7-3 this afternoon in the first round of the Atlantic 10 Baseball Tournament. Rhody now advances in the winners bracket to face off against three-seed Richmond, who knocked off GW earlier today. Meanwhile, seventh-seeded Fordham will play an elimination game tonight against an opponent yet to be determined.
As expected, URI sent ace Lou Distasio to the hill this afternoon, as Fordham countered with Brett Kennedy. And Rhody’s junior hurler ran into some trouble early. The Bronx Rams loaded the bases with one out in the top of the first as they plated a pair thanks to a ground out and an RBI single. Fordham added another run in the third and Rhode Island looked to be in trouble.
But the URI bats woke up. The good guys got two of those runs back in the bottom of the third before finally breaking through in the fifth. Ryan Olmo tied things up with an RBI double to spark a three-run rally and give Rhody a 5-3 advantage. The Rams would add a pair of insurance runs in the sixth when catcher Derek Gardella delivered a two-run single.
Meanwhile, Distasio settled into a groove. Beginning in the fourth, the righty faced the minimum as he held Fordham scoreless, thanks in part to two double-plays turned behind him. Distasio went seven innings in all, allowing the three runs on five hits while striking out a pair. Taso Stathopoulos pitched the final two innings in relief.
Rhode Island will now face the Richmond Spiders tomorrow morning as they look to keep things rolling. First pitch in that one is scheduled for 10:00 a.m.