Fordham Baseball Falls to Army West Point in Painful 8-2 Loss

The Rams failed to contain the Army offense, as their losing streak spirals to three straight



Zach Selinger, FCRH ’23, played well in vain against the Black Knights, as Fordham fell 8-2 in its third straight loss.


The Fordham baseball team was defeated by the United States Military Academy (USMA or Army West Point) Black Knights, 8-2, at Doubleday Field in West Point, New York, on the afternoon of Tuesday, April 20. This is the Rams’ most recent loss after they dropped both games of a doubleheader at Towson University in Maryland on April 17. 

Fordham kicked off the contest with a successful top of the first inning. After grinding out a solid at-bat, leadoff hitter and left fielder Jake Guercio, Gabelli School of Business at Rose Hill (GSBRH) ’22, lined a single to left. After a groundout by third baseman Zach Selinger, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’23, moved him up to second, Guercio swiped third. A base hit to left by Nick Labella, FCRH ’21, drove in Guercio to give Fordham an early score. 

The Rams had already faced Army the week before, outlasting the Black Knights 3-2 at Houlihan Park in the Bronx. For that game, Head Coach Kevin Leighton scheduled a bullpen day to give his valued starters a rest and his relievers more innings. The bullpen day, which is becoming an accepted strategy in higher-level baseball, proved effective. 

Leighton elected to employ the same strategy on Tuesday, using several of the same pitchers as well. This time, the pitching could not contain the Army offense as they exploded for six runs in the first two frames. 

After the Rams struck out three times and stranded two runners in the top of the second, Army continued to push back on offense.

Starter James Springer, GSBRH ’23, struggled in the bottom half of the first. After elbow surgery ended his season in 2020, the left-hander made his first collegiate appearance against Army last week, throwing a scoreless inning. 

In his second appearance against the same opponent, Springer allowed a four-pitch walk to start off the frame. He then let up a double to right field to tie the game at one run apiece. Another double to the gap in left-center put Fordham behind a run, but Springer ultimately collected himself and got out of the inning without any further damage. 

After the Rams struck out three times and stranded two runners in the top of the second, Army continued to push back on offense. As per the bullpen day, Alex Henderson, GSBRH ’23, came in to relieve Springer in the bottom of the second. The right-hander did not fare much better. Henderson gave up a single to left, and then a fielder’s choice put a runner on first with one out. Another single to right and a steal of second put runners on second and third. 

The Black Knights capitalized on this opportunity as Henderson surrendered a base-clearing triple to the right field corner. An RBI single to center by Anthony Giachin, USMA ’21, scored another run. Giachin came around to score on the same play after a throwing error by center fielder Ryan Thiesse, FCRH ’24. It was an inning to forget for the Rams, as they found themselves down 6-1 going into the third.

The Rams went down in order in the top of the third. Henderson rebounded in the bottom half of the inning, striking out two in a scoreless frame. At the plate, Fordham finally showed signs of life in the fourth. A walk by Michael Taylor, GSBRH ’24, a ringing double to right by shortstop Nico Boza, FCRH ’24, and a walk by Thiesse loaded the bases. The Rams were unable to take advantage of this situation, however; they stranded all three runners on a popout and flyout. 

Graduate student Alex Hernandez, GSBRH ’21, was unable to quell the surging Army offense in the bottom of the fourth. He gave up a two-run home run to right field off the bat of Giachin, who plagued the Rams’ bullpen throughout the day. Giachin’s shot put Army ahead 8-1. 

The bullpen performed considerably better in the second half of the game. Ben Kovel, GSBRH ’23; Brooks Ey, FCRH ’24; and Joseph Quintal, GSBRH ’21, combined to throw four scoreless innings with one strikeout each. Fordham scored a final run in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly off the bat of C.J. Vazquez, GSBRH ’21. 

It was a disappointing day on the mound and at the plate for the Rams. Their recent skid comes at an inopportune time, as they will travel to Philadelphia to take on the St. Joseph’s University Hawks in an Atlantic 10 Conference matchup on April 24 and 25. They will hope to get back in the win column against the Hawks, who are 17-15 against them in their last 32 games since 2008.