Seton Hall’s offense awakens with 11 hits, grand slam in win over Princeton

Behind a grand slam and five RBIs from senior Joe Poduslenko, the Seton Hall Pirates were able to record 11 hits as a team on the way to a 14-3 victory over the Princeton Tigers on a clear, sunny Wednesday afternoon at Owen T. Carroll Field.

The Pirates (12-10) received multi-hit efforts from Poduslenko as well as from Mike Alescio, and after scoring just four runs over three games against Connecticut, Seton Hall had themselves an offensive display in the winning effort.

Photo via SHU Athletics

“We had some opportunities this past weekend with bases loaded where we didn’t really cash in and today we worked on making some adjustments from yesterday and today, the guys had the opportunity to put that practice into play,” head coach Rob Sheppard said. “It was great to see the guys swinging the bats well with runners in scoring position.”

After Mikael-Ali Mogues launched his second home run of the season to straightaway center field in the bottom of the second inning, Princeton jumped out to a 2-1 lead after scoring a pair of runs in the top of the third. Seton Hall retook and then kept the lead after Rob Dadona scored on a RBI groundout from Poduslenko, and Ryan Ramiz scored on a wild pitch.

The game broke out in the bottom of the fourth inning after Princeton walked the bases loaded, which led to Poduslenko crushing a grand slam to left-center field for his fourth home run of the year to give the Pirates a 7-2 lead.

“It was a good day for me at the plate,” Poduslenko said. “I had been at a stall recently, myself and the whole offense, so it was good to get everyone going in the right direction, especially with Big East play approaching.”

Starting pitcher Chris Morris went four innings, striking out seven while allowing two earned runs on two hits. However, it was Billy Layne, Jr. who picked up his second win of the season. He went three innings, allowing one unearned run on four hits while fanning four batters.

The Pirates reached a season high in runs scored, walks taken and stolen bases on Wednesday, and the Pirates are now 3-0 in mid-week games this season. Some reserve Pirates also scored big in their own way, as Chris Talbott drove in his first career run, Nelson Valerio scored his first career run and Tyler Shedler-McAvoy recorded his first career hit, all in the bottom of the eighth inning, to which Mogues said the dugout was “fired up.”

“Those guys put in a lot of hard work and often times don’t get much action, but when they get their opportunity it’s important they contribute in any way possible, and they certainly did that today,” Mogues said.

Seton Hall will have a short turnaround before its next game. The Pirates will look to begin a three-game set against LIU-Brooklyn, starting on Friday, March 31. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.

Matt Lamb can be reached at matthew.lamb@student.shu.edu or on Twitter @MattS_Lamb.

Author: Matt Lamb

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