No. 25 Ithaca Tosses Second Straight Shutout in E8 Tournament to Top Fisher, 4-0

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ITHACA, N.Y. – For the second consecutive game, the No. 25 Ithaca College baseball team fired a shutout in the Empire 8 Conference Tournament as the Bombers blanked St. John Fisher College, 4-0, at Cornell's Hoy Field on Friday afternoon to advance to tomorrow's final. Ithaca is now 30-7 on the season and has won 11 straight games. Fisher falls to 28-13 and will square off against Stevens later today in an elimination game.

Senior Jake Binder was the story of the day as the righty hurled his fifth complete game and third shutout of the season to improve to 7-3. Binder scattered nine hits in the outing with two strikeouts and stranded 11 Fisher runners, including eight in scoring position, on the day. Binder also fielded his position extremely well, as he notched six assists and a putout.

In the bottom of the first inning, Fisher loaded the bases on a pair of walks and a hit by pitch. The first two batters for the Cardinals drew free passes and then Binder retired the next two hitters on a fly ball and groundout. The bases were then loaded on the hit by pitch, but Binder induced an inning-ending groundball to second base to get out of the jam.

Ithaca got on the board in the top of the fourth inning to take a 1-0 lead on a ringing double off the bat of junior Buzz Shirley to the left-center gap with two outs. Senior Sam Little came all the way around to score from first base after he reached on a fielder's choice.

The Cardinals once again threatened in the bottom half of the fourth with back-to-back singles to start things off. After a sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position, Binder once again settled in and retired to side on groundball comebackers to keep IC ahead, 1-0.

IC extended its lead to 3-0 in the top of the fifth inning on a two-out two-run doubles to left-center by senior Webb Little to plate sophomore Jack Lynch and senior Garrett Snyder. Lynch reached on a fielder's choice and Snyder found his way on via a hit by pitch.

The double from W. Little moved him into elite company at Ithaca College as he became just the fifth Bomber to reach 200 career hits.

In the top of the ninth, Ithaca added another run to its lead as senior Matt Carey blooped a single into the left-center gap to bring home Shirley to give IC a 4-0 advantage. Shirley reached on a walk and moved into scoring position on a base hit from senior Cam Fuoti.

Binder closed out the shutout with a pop up to short after the Cardinals placed a pair of runners in scoring position on a single and double.

Shirley and Fuoti each recorded two hits for the Bombers, while W. Little and Carey had the other two hits.

The Bombers will look to clinch an automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Championship tomorrow at 10 a.m. A winner-take-all game will be played after that the Bombers lose the morning contest.