Royals Come Back to Hand Rangers First Loss

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FORT MYERS, Fla. (March 10, 2013) – The Bethel University Royals (7-2) scored a combined six runs in the seventh and eighth innings to defeat the Rangers, 9-5 in the first game of the Gene Cusic Classic this afternoon. The Rangers suffer their first loss of the spring and fall to 3-1 on the young season.

Senior Michael Bodden (Toms River, N.J./Monsignor Donovan) and sophomore Chris Roll (Linden, N.J./Union County Vo-Tech) each had a pair of hits and drove in two runs apiece. Ranger starting pitcher, Ken Myers (Stratford, N.J./Sterling) went five innings allowing three runs and struck out two earning the no-decision.

Bethel jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a sacrifice fly by Mike Schultz and an RBI single by Luke Schultz. The Rangers got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third inning on a RBI double by Bodden that scored Matthew Kaplon (Palisades Park, N.J./Palisades Park).

After falling behind 3-1 in the fifth, the Rangers tied the game up in the bottom half of the inning. With runners on second and third, Bodden squeeze bunted home Kaplon and the next batter, Steve Kowalski (Robbinsville, N.J./Robbinsville) singled home Roll to tie the game up at three.

The Rangers took a 5-3 lead in their next turn at the plate thanks to a two-RBI double by Roll that scored Kaplon and Bobby Miskura (Rutherford, N.J./Rutherford).

The lead would not last long as the Royals posted a three-spot in the top half of the seventh thanks to RBI hits by Luke Shultz and Grady Rolando. Bethel tacked on three more runs in the top of the eighth to put the game out of reach for the Rangers.

Luke Schultz finished the day with a 4-for-5 effort at the plate with three RBIs and three runs scored. Two-hitter Nik Anderson scored four of the Royals nine runs and was 3-for-5 on the afternoon.

The Rangers will be back on the diamond tomorrow morning when they take on The Coast Guard Academy at 10:00 a.m. in game two of the Gene Cusic Classic. Live Audio and Live Stats will be available for tomorrow's game.