Following a weekend sweep of West Virginia, the baseball team returned to the field on Tuesday only to be shutout by St. Peter’s, 7-0.
The loss snapped the Pirates’ five-game winning streak, dropping their record to 26-19.
“I don’t know if we underestimated them, but we just tried to swing the bats a little bit but their pitcher, he just had our number, and we couldn’t do anything to get the offense going,” junior Giuseppe Papaccio said.
Pitching for the Peacocks was senior Joe Jimenez. In his first start of the season, Jimenez pitched a complete game shutout, holding the Hall to only five hits while recording six strikeouts in the process.
“He kept us off balanced the whole time,” Papaccio said of Jimenez. “Some guys mid-week you see either with a good fastball and no off-speed or just off-speed, but this kid had good off-speed, and he kept us off-balanced so we never found a rhythm with him.”
Papaccio led the offense, going 2-4 on the day while senior Will Walsh, junior Mike Genovese and freshman Tyler Boyd recorded the other hits for the Pirates’ offense.
Junior Greg Terhune started on the mound but lasted only four innings while giving up three runs in the process.
St. Peter’s got on the board first when in the first inning after a leadoff walk led to junior Matt Speckmann, who reached second on a balk. One batter later, senior Chris Grimes singled to right field to bring Speckmann in and give the Peacocks the lead for good.
For the Pirates, they did not record their first hit until the top of the fourth when Papaccio led off the inning with a single to left. Papaccio advanced to third after a sacrifice bunt and a wild pitch with only one out, but the Pirates were unable to get Papaccio acorss the plate.
“We had some opportunities early, and we just didn’t capitalize,” Sheppard said. “I think that gave their pitcher some confidence, and he got tougher as the game went on.”
With the Pirates missing an opportunity to tie the score, St. Peter’s responded in the bottom half of the inning to put two more runs across on a single up the middle from junior Matt Mancini, making the score 3-0.
Another Peacocks run in the fifth put the Hall into a 4-0 hole. The Pirates started the sixth with back-to-back hits from Walsh and Genovese.
With runners on first and second, Papaccio moved both runners into scoring position on a groundout for the first out of the inning. Despite runners on first and second, the Pirates were once again unable to get any runner across the plate.
Meanwhile, St. Peter’s continued putting runs across the plate adding another in the bottom of the sixth and adding two more in the seventh to close out the 7-0 victory.
“Anytime you get out there and you are on a run you want to keep it going,” Sheppard said. “We got to get that behind us and keep looking to Friday.”
On Friday, the Pirates will travel to Georgetown to take on the Hoyas in a three-game series starting at 7 p.m..
Stephen Valenti can be reached at Stephen.email@example.com.