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Rutgers earns 8-7 walk off win over Princeton



Jordan Sweeney had the game winning hit to complete the ninth inning comeback. Photo credit Tom Gilbert/Rutgers Athletics

Rutgers trailed in-state rival Princeton 7-5 in the ninth inning before staging a game winning rally under the lights of Bainton Field. Jordan Sweeney came through for the second straight game as RU trailed four different times before outlasting the Tigers 8-7. The Scarlet Knights improved to 27-18 overall while Princeton fell to 21-19. They are now 12-0 in midweek games and 5-0 against other New Jersey teams this season.

Princeton led 3-1 and then 5-2 before Rutgers tied the game in the seventh inning. After Tigers starter Will Sword exited without giving up an earned run through six frames, RU jumped on the bullpen. Ryan Lasko hit a two run triple before scoring on a Evan Sleight sacrifice fly to tie the game. However, Kyle Vinci hit his second homer of the game in the eighth inning to give the visitors a 7-5 lead.

Down to its last three outs, the top of the Rutgers lineup delivered in the clutch. Leadoff hitter Josh Kuroda-Grauer started things off with single. It was Lasko again coming up big with a game tying two run homer. The star center fielder finished with 3 hits, 5 RBI and 2 runs scored. Chris Brito followed with a single, his second hit of the game. Sleight was then hit by a pitch to make it four straight batters reaching base in the bottom of the ninth. With one out, Sweeney stepped to the plate and delivered a single to right center field passed the diving second baseman to score Brito with winning run.

Garrett French improved to 2-1 this season in earning the win after getting the final out in the top of the ninth inning.

Next up is a critical three-game series against Big Ten foe Penn State. The first two games begin at 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday night. Sunday’s finale starts at 2:00 p.m. All three games will stream live on B1G+. If you plan to attend (free admission), you can register for parking here.

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  1. FlaRef

    May 4, 2023 at 11:47 am

    Exciting come-from-behind win! Coach pushing all the right buttons on the way to the B1G tourney. Future pros in the lineup playing great this season without the fanfare and hype. RU HR program record held by Todd Fraser in jeopardy by the big bats in the lineup. All the way guys!

  2. FlaRef

    May 4, 2023 at 8:27 pm

    If this was a buzzer-beater against Princeton, the media would be all over it. A come from behind rally in the bottom of the ninth after trailing by two runs, meh!

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