Three games, a lightning delay and 30 innings later, the Lehigh baseball team is the Patriot League champions.
Lehigh (25-27, 12-8 Patriot) won Game 3 of the Patriot League Championship series 4-3 in extra innings over Navy to earn its first conference title since 2006 and second overall.
Junior second baseman Mike Garzillo won the tournament MVP award, totaling five home runs and 11 RBI throughout the tournament.
No. 2 seed Lehigh was scheduled to face No. 1 seed Navy in a doubleheader Saturday, but a weather delay forced them to suspend the end of the second game until the next day. The Mountain Hawks won Game 1, 7-3.
The second game went into extra innings before the delay, and the game was suspended in the bottom of the 10th with no outs tied at 8.
The game resumed Sunday afternoon, but Navy wrapped it up quickly after scoring a run in the 11th to win the game 9-8. Since the series was tied at one game each, the teams were forced to play Game 3 immediately after.
The third game began with three scoreless innings. Navy broke the tie with two runs scored off a throwing error by Lehigh. The Mountain Hawks bounced back in the fifth with three runs of their own, taking a 3-2 lead.
In the seventh, Navy third baseman Trevor Knowles hit an RBI triple to tie the game back up. After nine innings the game was still tied, but Lehigh took a 4-3 lead in the top of the 10th when senior first baseman Connor Faust hit an RBI single, driving in Garzillo.
Senior Nick Macaione pitched all 10 innings of Game 3 and picked up the win, striking out four batters in the process.
Lehigh finished with a 4-3 record against Navy on the season, with three of its wins coming by just one run. During the regular season, the Hawks lost their first two games to Navy in a pair of lopsided losses, including one that was 21-1. Lehigh held Navy to 15 runs combined in the Patriot League Tournament combined though on its way to a championship.
Lehigh will move onto the NCAA Tournament as an automatic qualifier for winning the Patriot League. It will find out its opponent for the Regional round on May 25 during the selection show.
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