Seton Hall baseball split the first two games of a three-game series Saturday against the LIU-Brooklyn Blackbirds, 10-2 and 6-2, respectively.
In game one Zach Prendergast got the start for the Pirates. The right-hander got into a bit of trouble early as the Blackbirds scored two runs in the top of the second inning to take a 2-0 lead. However, the junior Prendergast settled down going six strong innings while striking out eight en route to his fourth win of the year.
“I was trying to get ahead with my fastball and get strike one,” Prendergast said. “I was able to do that a lot more later in the game and I was able to work my off-speed better off of that.”
Ryan Ramiz got the Pirate offense going in the home half of the third with a two-out, two-run double off LIU-Brooklyn starter Anthony Rupp to tie the game at two. The Hall took the lead in the following inning with a Joe Poduslenko sacrifice fly.
The bulk of the Pirate offense came in the bottom of the sixth, leading 3-2. \Highlighted by a Poduslenko three-run home run, Seton Hall’s offense erupted for seven runs to bring the lead to 10-2 where it would remain for the rest of the game.
Cullen Dana took the ball for the Pirates in game two giving up six runs through six and two-thirds innings. Similar to game one, the Blackbirds got on the board first, with five runs in the visitor’s third to take an early 5-0 lead.
The Pirates got two back in the home half of the third on two solo home runs by Poduslenko—his second of the day and third in three games—and Mikael-Ali Mogues—his second in three games—to cut the Blackbird lead to 5-2.
“I’m just trying to see pitches, work my timing, and put together quality at-bats,” Poduslenko said. “I feel good at the plate right now so I’m just trying to keep it rolling and stay locked in.”
LIU-Brooklyn tacked on an insurance run in the seventh to increase the lead to 6-2 and knock Dana from the game. Still facing a threat with a man on third, Matt Leon entered the game and proceeded to strikeout Edward Modica on three pitches to end the threat. Leon was strong in relief tossing two-and-a-third innings of shutout ball while striking out five.
Down 6-2, Seton Hall threatened one more time in the bottom of the seventh by loading the bases but were unable to get any runs across.
The rubber match of this series will begin with the first pitch scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday. Shane McCarthy will take the mound for the Pirates.
Nick Santoriello can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @NickSantoriello.