MERION STATION, Pa. – The Saint Joseph’s baseball team bowed out of the Liberty Bell Classic in the quarterfinals, falling to defending champion Lafayette, 3-1, at Smithson Field on Tuesday afternoon.

Neither team was able to get anything going offensively early on.  Saint Joseph’s (10-11) had the best chance early, putting two on with nobody out in the second after Jon Faraci walked Dominic Cuoci and hit Andrew Cossetti with a pitch, but the Leopards’ starter worked around the early trouble to escape the inning unscathed.

Lafayette (7-15) finally broke the deadlock in the top of the sixth as Justin Johnson led off the inning with a double, stole third, and then scored on a throwing error.

The Leopards tacked on another run in the seventh on an RBI groundout by Michael Landry.

The Hawks manufactured a run of their own in the bottom of the inning as Matt Cuppari ripped a one-out triple to the right field corner and came in to score on groundout by Liam Bendo.

The visitors restored their two-run advantage with an insurance run on an eighth-inning double by Spencer Rouse, and Frank Craska came in from the bullpen in the ninth and retired the Hawks in order to end the ballgame.

Craska notched his second save of the season as he preserved the win for David Giusti, who allowed one hit in two shutout innings.  Grant Calvarese took the loss for SJU after he was charged with one run on one hit in one inning of relief.  Jake Meyers got the start for the Hawks and tossed three shutout innings.  He fanned four without allowing a hit or a walk.

The Hawks will look to rebound as they return to conference play with a series at George Washington this weekend.  First pitch in Friday’s series opener at Barcroft Park in Arlington, Virginia, is set for 3:00 p.m.

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