April 2, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa.--This afternoon Villanova will play a semifinal game in the Liberty Bell Classic, as the Wildcats head to Penn for a 3 p.m. contest. The winner of this afternoon's game will advance to the championship game of the local tournament, which is held annually at Citizens Bank Park. Villanova and the Quakers met earlier this season at Meiklejohn Stadium, with Penn claiming a 12-5 victory.
Each year the Liberty Bell Classic is one of the highlights of the local non-conference schedule for the Wildcats, who have won the tournament outright four times and also shared the championship one other time. Villanova defeated La Salle last Tuesday, 5-3, in a quarterfinal game and the Quakers notched an 8-1 victory at Lafayette a day later to clinch their spot in today's semifinal.
Senior right-handed pitcher Kevin MacLachlan (Matawan, N.J.) was the winning pitcher in last week's quarterfinal victory. He pitched 3 2/3 scoreless innings of relief in the game to earn his first victory of the season and is no stranger to successful performances in the Liberty Bell Classic. As a sophomore in 2011, MacLachlan started the championship game against Delaware and allowed just two earned runs over 5 2/3 innings to pick up the win. Villanova defeated the Blue Hens, 7-6, in that game to win their fourth championship.
In the matchup against Penn earlier this season freshman designated hitter Luke Emling (Nottingham, Pa.) went 3-for-4 with a run scored and three runs batted in, while senior center fielder Paul Rambaud (Chicago, Ill.) had two hits and a run scored. The Wildcats finished with nine hits and took a 5-3 lead in the top of the sixth inning, but the Quakers scored five times in the bottom half of the inning to take the lead for good en route to a 12-5 final margin.
The winner of today's game between Villanova and Penn will face either Delaware or Temple in the championship game at Citizens Bank Park.