The Seton Hall baseball team defeated Iona, 4-1, behind the powerful arm of left-handed junior pitcher Greg Terhune.
“In mid-week games, you want to get your guys to give you quality starts,” head coach Rob Sheppard said. “Yesterday, we got a quality start from Henry Warner, and we got a good quality start today from Greg (Terhune).”
Before being relieved in the fifth inning, Terhune gave up only one run to the Gaels while striking out four batters and not walking a single batter.
“Greg pitched really well,” senior second baseman Chase Gray said. “He came out and threw strikes, and put us in a great position to win.”
The Pirates (23-18, 8-7) put their mark on the board first in the second inning after senior Mike Betz singled just to right of center field, scoring junior Scott Kalamar.
In the fourth inning, Iona’s senior first baseman Mike Chiaravalloti got the Gaels’ first run, sending home freshman designated hitter Jimmy Guiliano to tie the score at one a piece.
But that was Iona’s first and only run scored as the Pirates continued to put runs on the board.
Leading off for the Pirates in the bottom of the fourth, freshman Kyle Grimm doubled on a drive to left field. Two batters later, freshman Tyler Boyd hit a sacrifice fly to center field, sending Grimm home to retake the lead, 2-1.
Junior Giuseppe Papaccio cracked an infield single in the fifth, scoring senior Will Walsh, extending the Hall’s lead to 3-1.
Grimm’s single past Iona’s diving defender in the eighth inning tallied the fourth and final run of the game by Gray.
Sliding into home, Gray clashed with Iona’s catcher James Beck, but Beck dropped the ball. With the ball laying in the dirt, Gray tagged home, or so he thought. The umpire called Gray out, saying he never touched the base before Beck picked up the ball to tag Gray.
“It was kind of a wacky play,” Gray said. “I originally didn’t touch the base at all and then he dropped it. I touched the plate and looked at the umpire, but he didn’t say anything. I was waiting for a call and then the catcher tags me and the umpire said, ‘Well, now you’re out.'”
After discussing the play with the other umpires, the call was reversed but not without Iona’s manager being ejected.
With the score 4-1 in favor of the Pirates, senior right-handed pitcher Benny Mejia came to the mound in the ninth inning, striking out a Gaels’ batter to end the game and earn his team-leading’s fourth save of the season.
“Every day we expect to keep improving,” Gray said. “We can hit better than we have in the past. We showed glimpses of having a good offense in Louisville, and we plan on hitting well this weekend to back up our pitching, which is always great.”
Krissy Wrobel can be reached at email@example.com