Winless streak continues with tie
Prior to Tuesday afternoon’s game in Old Westbury, N.Y. against NYIT, five out of the Pirates’ last six games were decided by no more than a run. They continued this trend at President’s Field, this time by way of a 12-12 draw.
“You can’t really hang your head too much,” infielder Chris Fontenelli said. “As a team, you know that you’re right there; you just have to get over that hump.”
The game lasted four hours, but only eight innings were played due to darkness. The time frame was long enough time for the Pirates to bounce back from an 8-1 deficit.
A grand slam from Vin Caposio got the Bears on the scoreboard quickly in the first inning. Their first five runs went unanswered.
The Pirates scored five runs on two hits in the top of the fifth inning.
Junior A.J. Rubarsky started the action with a walk and then advanced to third on a single from classmate Sean Gusrang. Sophomore Michael Betz hit a sacrifice fly to bring Rubarsky home and get the Pirates their first run.
Freshman Giuseppe Papaccio also walked preceding freshman Scott Kalamar getting hit by a pitch and consequently loading the bases. Sophomore Will Walsh brought Gusrang home on an RBI fielder’s choice.
Chase Gray hit a two-run single to bring the Pirates within two, 8-6.
The Pirates tied the game at 8-8 in the top of the sixth. Three two-out walks loaded the bases and Papaccio made it home on an error from Ryan Campbell, the Bears’ second baseman. The tying run came from Rogers in another bases-loaded walk.
The Bears again advanced to a two-run lead, but freshman Connor Delepine and Papaccio responded by evening the score off sacrifice fly balls.
The Pirates enjoyed their first and only lead of the game in the top of the eighth and final inning. Rogers smashed a two-run homer after Walsh drew a lead-off walk. His bomb over the right-center field fence brought the score to 12-11, favoring the Hall.
In the bottom of the inning, the Bears got things started with a walk. Jerry Smith’s sacrifice bunt put a runner on second base. With only one out, Sebastian Grazziani grounded a ball down the left side, which Rubarsky fielded on his backhand.
He threw the ball to Papaccio at third base, but it was knocked out of his glove as Christian Dienna was attempting to avoid being tagged.
Caposio hit the double that was needed to score the game-tying run.
The last outs were recorded on a double play.
Gusrang earned a team-high three hits and two runs scored. Rogers came away with two hits, four RBIs, and a run scored.
The Pirates lost all three games in their weekend series against Notre Dame at Owen T. Carroll field. The final scores were 6-5, 2-1, and 7-4.
During the final game of the series on Sunday, the Pirates held onto a 4-1 lead going into the sixth inning. The advantage waned as they continued to allow six unanswered runs, three of which came in the ninth inning.
In lieu of the recent one-run losses, Fontenelli said they can be seen as learning experiences for the first and second year players.
“They’re getting a ton of experience,” Fontenelli said. “The upper classmen pitchers have done a good job of showing them the way.”
The Pirates continue on the road this week as they face Big East opponent Louisville in a three-game series. The first pitch is scheduled for Friday at 6 p.m.
Gabrielle Kiger can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org