Shippensburg University baseball: Raiders short, falling to Mansfield

The Raiders came up short on Saturday in a pair of close Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Eastern Division matchups at Mansfield, falling 3-1 and 10-9 in action at Shaute Field.

How it happened

Shippensburg (14-14, 12-12 PSAC East) held leads in both games against Mansfield (10-18, 9-15); including three leads in the nightcap, but could not put away the Mounties. SU scored three runs in the seventh inning of Game 2 to take a 9-6 lead; but the hosts rallied for four runs in the bottom of the seventh, hitting a walk-off two-out, two-run double to sweep the Raiders.

The offensive star of the day was sophomore Justin Darden (Mountain Top, Pa./Crestwood), who hit a two-run home run in each of his first three at-bats in Game 2. Darden became the first Raider to hit three home runs in a game since Jake Kennedy (March 22, 2017 vs. Chestnut Hill). He finished the doubleheader with four hits, including a Game 1 double. 

Graduate JuJu Cason (East Arcadia, N.C./North Brunswick (Belmont Abbey)) began the doubleheader with a leadoff double and scored two batters later on a groundout, but that was SU’s only run of the opener. Freshman Kaleb Sophy (Orwigsburg, Pa./Blue Mountain) threw 67 pitches and logged a complete game, striking out five. MU’s Hunter DePrimo threw a 65-pitch complete game, scattering seven hits without a walk and striking out five. Game 1 was over and done with in 90 minutes.

Game 2 featured 12 combined runs over the final three innings. Ben Werkheiser (Doylestown, Pa./Germantown Academy (Delaware)) had two hits and three runs scored. Tony Vavaroutsos (Toronto, Ontario/Mary Ward Catholic) and Joe Barbera (Harrisburg, Pa./Bishop McDevitt) hit doubles.

What’s next

Shippensburg returns to action at noon Thursday for a Senior Day doubleheader against West Chester at Fairchild Field. The Raiders will honor Kyle Lysy (Allentown, N.J./Allentown), Kiernan Higgins (Buffalo, N.Y./Bishop Timon- St. Jude (Coastal Carolina)), Chase Zurawski (Reading, Pa./Wilson), Chris Horst (Enola, Pa./East Pennsboro) and Matt Ryan (Skillman, N.J./Montgomery (Delaware)) in a ceremony.

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