Success starting at the plate for SHU’s win streak

In its past six games, Seton Hall baseball is averaging more than nine runs per game with four of those resulting in double-digit runs scored.

It is no coincidence that each of those five games resulted in a win for the Pirates, who now look to finish out their schedule in the same way with hopes of reaching the Big East Tournament.

Senior Joe Poduslenko has provided a huge bat for the Pirates as he leads the team in both home runs and RBI with five and 27, respectively. Photo via SHU Athletics.

Each game has had a different story line. However, there are some consistencies. In each of the six games, Seton Hall put up at least one run by the conclusion of the fourth inning. Only one of those times was that amount limited to one run.

The fifth and sixth innings have been the moneymakers for the Hall, where it has averaged more than four runs in the two innings combined. During the win streak, there has been only one scoreless fifth inning for Seton Hall, and two scoreless sixth innings.

Pulling away in the final innings was a huge factor in SHU coming away with these wins.

It has averaged just under two runs in the seventh through ninth innings of its past wins, with only one scoreless finish. In four of the six games, Seton Hall did not have to come to bat in the bottom of the ninth.

Seton Hall’s runs have come at a crucial time as well, since its opponents have also been putting up just over five runs per game. Although much of this scoring has come later on in the game, starting pitcher Zach Prendergast talked about how helpful it is to have run support after he fanned nine batters and went four hitless innings in Seton Hall’s win against Georgetown on Sunday, April 23.

“It definitely takes some of the pressure off,” Prendergast said. “Knowing that you don’t have to be perfect necessarily, and you can just go out there and throw strikes and have your defense make the plays.”

Seton Hall’s success at the plate begins with limiting its strikeouts. It has averaged only six strikeouts a game, while averaging 11.4 hits.

Furthermore, Seton Hall has double digits in the hit category in every game of the six game winning streak.

The Pirates have found extra base hits to help them as well, hitting 13 doubles over the five game span, as well as eight triples.

One of the key players is offensively for Seton Hall has been catcher Matt Fortin. The senior has three doubles and three RBI’s in his five games played over the winning streak. He has not done it alone, however. The Pirates’ batting average over their streak is .307, while for the season, they’re only batting .256.

“We’re all really linking up the lineup together,” Fortin said. “We have a really good leadoff hitter in Joe [Poduslenko]. He shows us the way and then we take it from the other guys down the lineup to just keep continuing to get hits.”

Seton Hall will look to continue with its offensive momentum in its three remaining conference series against Creighton, Villanova and St. John’s, as well as its five remaining out-of-conference matchups. The Pirates currently sit in the final Big East Tournament spot, and will look to remain in postseason contention with their offense down the stretch.

Keith Egan can be reached at keith.egan@student.shu.edu or on Twitter @Keith_egan10.

Author: Keith Egan

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