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Late rally comes up short as Pirates drop season opener

The Seton Hall baseball team dropped its season opener by a final score of 4-3 to Ohio State in Port Charlotte, Fla. on Friday afternoon.

Ricky DeVito, the 2018 Big East Pitcher of the Year and a member of the 2018 All-Big East First Team, took the mound for the Pirates in their opening day matchup. DeVito pitched four innings, allowing only three hits and one run.

From the batter’s box, Matt Toke had an impressive outing with a two-run homer in the top of the eighth inning. Alex Clyde had two hits and was the only Pirate to do so on the day.

Photo via SHU Athletics

The first inning went by quickly as both sides retired the first three batters. The top of the second inning went to the same tune for the Pirates, but the Buckeyes did not follow suit. With players on second and third, Ohio State was in a position to grab the early lead, but the Pirates’ defense and DeVito were able to shut the door.

In the top of the third, Clyde singled past second base before Chris Villa lined into a double play. At the end of the third, the Buckeyes managed to get on the scoreboard to take a 1-0 lead.

In the top of the fourth, the offense began to click for the Pirates started as Christian Del Castillo doubled to right field. Del Castillo was able to take third off a wild pitch, and Toke and Casey Dana were walked, making the bases loaded. On another wild pitch, Del Castillo was able to score and tie the game at one run apiece.

After a strong four innings, DeVito was replaced on the mound by Blake Espinal. The first batter Espinal faced hit a homerun to right field and Ohio State regained its lead.

Then, in the seventh inning, Ohio State increased the lead 4-1.

In the top of the eighth inning, the Pirates tried for a comeback, as Nick Dabrio doubled to right field and scored on Toke’s homerun. However, the Pirates were unable to create any more offense in the game and ultimately fell.  

The three-game series with the Buckeyes continues on Feb. 16 at 2 p.m. and Feb. 17 at 12 p.m.  

Brittany Tomore can be reached at or on Twitter @BrittTomore.

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