BRONX, N.Y. – The Saint Joseph’s baseball team lost a pair of tight games at Fordham on Saturday, dropping the first game of the doubleheader, 2-0, before falling 4-3 in the nightcap.

In the opener, Fordham (19-12 overall, 5-3 Atlantic 10) scored single runs in the third and fourth inning to come away with a 2-0 win.

Jordan DiValerio retired the first seven batters of the game, but the Rams got on the board when Billy Godrick singled and then scored on a two-out double by Jake MacKenzie.

Justin Bardwell led off the fourth for the hosts with a single, advanced on a sacrifice bunt and a balk, and scored on a single by Matt Tarabek to double the lead.

Kadar Namey led off the seventh for the Hawks with a single, then advanced to third on a failed pickoff attempt, but Fordham’s Matt Mikulski worked his way through the inning and stranded Namey at third.

The Hawks threatened again in the ninth as Jake Artz and Matt Cuppari hit consecutive two-out singles, but Kyle Martin notched the final out to record his fifth save of the season.

Martin saved the game for Mikulski, who improved to 4-3 after allowing four hits and four walks while striking out seven over eight innings.  DiValerio took the tough-luck loss, falling to 3-3 on the season after ceding two runs on four hits while also fanning seven.

A pair of sixth-inning errors spelled doom for the Hawks in game two, as the Rams notched a 4-3 victory.

Saint Joseph’s (12-16 overall, 5-3 Atlantic 10) opened an early lead in the top of the second inning.  Andrew Cossetti led off the frame and reached on an error before moving to third on a one-out single by Artz.  Cuppari followed with a single to bring home Cossetti before Brendan Hueth singled home Artz to put the Hawks ahead, 2-0.

The Hawks then loaded the bases with one out in the third, but Fordham’s John Stankiewicz settled in to retire the side and begin a stretch of 11 consecutive hitters sent down.

The Rams got on the board in the bottom of the fifth as MacKenzie led off with a single and eventually scored on a two-out base hit by Nick Labella.

The hosts then took the lead on a trio of unearned runs in the sixth.  After a pair of one-out singles, Jake Baker reached on a bunt single of his own; an errant throw allowed two runs to score and give Fordham a 3-2 lead.  Two batters later, another throwing error brought Baker home from third to make it a two-run game.

SJU got one back in the top of the seventh.  Cuppari and Hueth started the inning with singles, and a James McConnon RBI groundout brought Cuppari around to make it 4-3 at stretch time.

Martin came on in the ninth once again to save the game, this time for Stankiewicz, who improved to 5-1 after allowing two runs in six innings.  Matt Kennedy took the loss, falling to 3-2 after allowing four runs – one earned – in 5.1 innings of work.

The teams will play the series finale on Sunday beginning at noon.

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