The Seton Hall baseball team finished a perfect weekend at Owen T. Carroll Field, beating Lehigh 3-0 on Sunday afternoon.
The win is Shane McCarthy’s first on the season, and a much-welcomed one for the starter who entered the day 0-3 with a 9.45 ERA on the young season. McCarthy went a long way in lowering his earned run number, pitching five scoreless innings while tallying three strikeouts, and allowing only two hits.
Lehigh shortstop James Blemming committed what turned out to be a fatal error for a Mountain Hawks side that managed no runs in 18 innings of play in South Orange. Blemming traveled deep into center field to try to contest a fly ball but ended up losing his bearings and made a mess of the situation. Seton Hall designated hitter Matt Toke reached base by virtue of his mistake, and catcher Mike Alescio later drove him in with a RBI single.
With the single, Alescio extended his personal hit streak to 11 games and gave the Pirates a lead they would not relinquish.
“It felt good. I didn’t realize I had a hitting streak,” Alescio said. “I was just really glad I could contribute to another win, and a sweep in the series.”
The game would ultimately end in rather comfortable fashion, although Lehigh certainly made the Pirates sweat it out on a pleasantly warm afternoon. In the fifth inning, McCarthy worked himself into trouble creating a bases-loaded, one out jam, but was ultimately able to escape using a 6-4-3 double play.
In the sixth, with Matt Leon on the mound for the Pirates, a similar situation ensued with Lehigh getting two runners on base. Again, though, the Pirates were able to manage their way out of trouble. In the bottom of the frame, the Pirates tacked on two more runs to put some breathing room between the two sides. And again, Alescio was involved, scoring from first on a RBI double from catcher Matt Fortin, before Fortin was driven in by substitute outfielder Jackson Martin.
The Pirates used three separate relievers, Andrew Politi, Noah Thompson and Rick Devito to secure the win. The victory improves the Pirates to 10-8 on the season, setting themselves up in good shape for a five-game local road stand against Lafayette, Connecticut and Iona.
James Justice can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JamesJusticeIII.