Cardinals can't hold early lead, fall to Salisbury 7-3

WASHINGTON – Leading 3-0 after three innings, CUA was unable to hold onto its early lead and the Cardinals eventually dropped their second straight game, falling to Salisbury 7-3 on Sunday afternoon at Talbot Field.  Matt Grieb hit a lead-off home run and LJ Travaglia went 2 for 3 at the plate, but it was not enough, dropping the Cardinals to 12-9 on the year.

Grieb put CUA on top with a long homer to right center to lead things off for the Cardinals in the first.  CUA then went up 2-0 in the second when Chris McCloud doubled home Dimitri Deoudes who had reached on an error.

The lead reached three in the third inning when Marc Hanna laced a single to right field and Travaglia crossed home plate.  That proved to be the final Cardinals run of the afternoon though.

Salisbury got on the board for the first time with a pair of runs in the top half of the fourth.  Greg Janofsky and Dustin Herbert both had RBI doubles to cut CUA's lead to 3-2.

The Sea Gulls tied the game in the fifth when Bill Root came home on Brian Green's sacrifice fly to center field.

Salisbury then took its first lead of the day with two more runs in the sixth, including a round tripper by Herbert to right field.  That made it a 5-3 game and the Sea Gulls tacked on two more runs in the seventh to take a four-run lead.

CUA had a chance to cut into the Sea Gulls lead in the eighth when Travaglia singled with one out and Dave Grear followed with a single of his own.  Following a Salisbury pitching change Brendan Breslin reached on an error, which loaded the bases. 

That brought up Hanna, but he grounded into a double play, ending the Cardinals threat.

Ron Esposito suffered his first loss of 2011 after he surrendered five runs and nine hits in 5.2 innings of work.  He also struck out three batters and walked a pair.

Andrew Levy went 7.1 innings for Salisbury, struck out four and earned the win, while Drew Baldwin picked up the save after going 1.2 innings and striking out one.  

The Cardinals will be back in action on Tuesday when they head to Virginia to take on No. 1 Shenandoah in a make-up game from last week.  Start time is 4 p.m.

CUA returns to Talbot Field on Wednesday afternoon when the Cardinals play host to Washington College.  First pitch is slated for 3:30 p.m.

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