Malik Mitchell threw a complete game for the third-seeded Genesee Community College baseball team in the Region III Division II tournament opener, helping the Cougars defeat #2 Mercyhurst North East, 9-1.
Mercyhurst took an early 1-0 lead with a run in the top of the first inning. The Cougars came back to tie it with a run in the fourth and then took the lead after Zack Ranta hit a bases loaded double that scored two to give GCC a 3-1 lead. Genesee added another run in the fifth and added five more unanswered runs to defeat the Saints via the eight-run mercy rule after seven innings.
Brandon Collins hit a sacrifice fly in the sixth inning and drove in a run in the seventh on a double to help extend the lead. Jacob Sojda, Ramon Vega, and Jacob Kenney also drove in runs for the Cougars in the final inning.
In game two, Genesee managed just six hits off of top-seeded Monroe Community College's starting pitcher Dylan Sheffer, who went the distance and did not allow a run.
Collins and Ranta each collected two hits and Fauchedre Celestijn and Alex Lyons each went 1-3.
Monroe scored five runs in the second inning and twice in the sixth and tallied 11 hits in the game.
Ranta started the game on the mound and went five innings allowing five runs (three earned) on nine hits and struck out three. Ryan DiMartino threw the final three innings and allowed two earned runs on two hits and struck out one.
Genesee (1-1) will face elimination on Saturday at 4 p.m. Monroe CC (1-0) will play Mercyhurst NE (0-1) at 12 p.m. If Monroe wins, Mercyhurst NE will be eliminated from the tournament. If Mercyhurst NE wins, they will play Genesee for the right to play for the Region III Division II tournament title.