Keystone claims sixth straight CSAC championship

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La Plume, PA – Keystone College's baseball team claimed its six-straight Colonial States Athletic Conference Championship on Saturday afternoon and tenth-consecutive overall conference title with a 7-1 victory over Gwynedd Mercy University at Christy Mathewson Field.  The Giants, who have now won 17 of their last 18 games, improve to 27-12 overall while securing the CSAC's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.  The NCAA Regional brackets will be announced via a release on on Sunday at midnight.
Rob Blanc (Sandy Hook, CT/Trumbull) turned in an outstanding performance on the mound to lead Keystone to Saturday's victory, tossing eight scoreless innings of two-hit baseball.  Lymbel Guerrero (Lynn, MA/Lynn Classical) was named the CSAC Championship MVP for the second-straight year after going 3-4 with a solo home run on Saturday while finishing the tournament 8-15 with two home runs, seven RBIs, and seven runs scored.  Rick McLaughlin (Hamilton, NJ/Steinert) went 3-4 with three RBIs and finished just a home run shy of the cycle in Saturday's title game.
Gwynedd Mercy's David Blount led off Saturday's championship game with an infield single, After a hit batsman with two-outs in the innings, Blanc stranded a pair of runners to work out of trouble and the senior right-hander would go on to retire the next 18 batters he faced.
Blount's base hit was the only hit either team had through three and a half innings before Keystone's offense came alive in the bottom of the fourth inning.  Guerrero and Gaston Rojas (Carmel, NY/Carmel) hit back-to-back singles, Keystone's first two hits of the game against Griffins' starter Rick Elfreth, with Rojas's base knock to left field scoring Ricky Riscica (Greenwich, CT/Greenwich) with the game's first run.  The Giants then took a 3-0 lead when McLaughlin laced a two-out, two-run triple just inside the first base bag that plated Guerrero and Rojas.
Keystone extended their lead to 5-0 in the home sixth when Riscica scored his second run of the game on an RBI groundout by Kevin Luciano (Everett, MA/Cambridge Rindge and Latin School) before Guerrero scored crossed the plate when McLaughlin collected his second, two-out extra-base RBI hit of the contest on a double to the gap in right-center.
A two-out base hit in the top of the seventh inning by Gwynedd Mercy's Frank Saviski snapped Blanc's run of 18-straight outs, but the senior induced a popup to end the inning.
Guerrero launched the first pitch he saw leading off the bottom of the eighth inning deep over the fence in left field for his second home run in as many games, and fifth round-tripper of the season, to give the Giants a six-run advantage before Luciano scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Cody Darley (Port St. Lucie, FL/Treasure Coast) to give Keystone a 7-0 lead as the Griffins came up for their last at-bats.   
Gwynedd Mercy broke up the Giants' shutout bid in the top of the ninth inning as Dante Cassano scored on an RBI groundout by Beau Fleming, but it was all the offense the Griffins could muster as Steve Aniska (Scranton, PA/West Scranton) got a pair of fly ball outs to end the game.
Blanc was dominant on the mound in improving to 5-2 on the season, striking out four batters while allowing just one walk and dropping his ERA to 3.42 with the eight scoreless innings.  Aniska gave up the lone run in the ninth on two hits and one walks before closing out the game.    
McLaughlin and Guerrero each had three of the Giants' eight hits in the game with Riscica and Rojas adding base hits in the win. 
Elfreth (3-4) was charged with the loss for Gwynedd Mercy after allowing five runs on six hits and three walk while striking out four batters in six innings of work.  Trevor Sotell worked a perfect seventh inning for the Griffins while J.P. Harris allowed two runs on two hits and one walk in the eighth inning.
Saviski collected two of Gwynedd Mercy's four hits on the day as the Griffins end the 2014 season with a 20-18-1 record.
Keystone will learn their NCAA Regional bracket and opponents in the double-elimination regional tournament at Sunday's release.  Additional details will follow on Monday at