Pitching propels Pirates over Tigers
The baseball team used five pitchers to throw a team shutout in a 5-0 win over the Princeton Tigers on Wednesday afternoon at Owen T. Carroll Field.
“We pitched well,” Sheppard said. “Any time you have a shutout, obviously pitching is going to stand out. We scored some runs. We had other opportunities, and as a coach you look to cash in on every opportunity, but overall we pitched well, got a good start had good defense and had timely hitting.”
Sophomore Anthony Elia started on the mound for the Hall, and pitched five innings of solid work, allowing only two hits while striking out eight in his second win of the season.
“Elia was a guy we had in a weekend rotation at one point,” head coach Rob Sheppard said. “He’s a guy that we think can help us on the mound. It was good to see him get out there and give us five strong innings.”
Senior second baseman Mike Genovese said Elia’s performance on the mound was good to see for future mid-week games.
“He started off slow, but now he’s coming along,” he said. “He pitched great for us today. Hopefully he can keep doing that for us in the midweek and keep getting us wins.”
In the top of the second inning, the Tigers threatened to take the early lead after a ball off the bat of sophomore Blake Thomsen took a weird bounce off the left field wall. Pirates’ outfielder Ryan Sullivan played the ball and relayed the throw to shortstop Giuseppe Papaccio.
Papaccio quickly threw the ball to catcher Alex Falconi, who was blocking the plate, tagged out the running Alex Flink at home.
“It was very big,” Genovese said. “Sully played it nice off the wall.”
The Pirates’ bats came alive in the bottom of the third inning with two outs. First baseman Chris Selden reached base on a bunt down the third base line. He stole second before Scott Kalamar drew a walk. In the next at bat Papaccio slapped a double down the right field line, which brought home Selden. Genovese singled through the left side which scored Kalamar and Papaccio.
“Any time you can get two out RBIs, it’s big,” Sheppard said. “It’s really demoralizing on the opponent and when you’re not giving at bats away and you’re grinding out at bats and scoring with two outs, it really gives a lift to the team.”
Genovese also said that two-out runs but focused on the importance of scoring with two outs.
“Two-out runs are the biggest thing that hurts the other team the most,” he said.
The Hall added two insurance runs in the eighth inning, before sophomore Jose Lopez sealed the deal in the top of the ninth.
The four relievers, freshman Luke Cahill, senior Connor Delepine, senior Ed Ras and Lopez combined for seven strikeouts and one hit in four innings.
The Pirates will travel to Piscataway this weekend to take on in-state rival Rutgers for the team’s third Big East series of the season.
T.J. Brennan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.