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Bobcat baseball sweeps Wagner out of town
The Quinnipiac baseball team completed a four-game sweep of Wagner College with a 9-4 victory Sunday at home. A six-run seventh inning broke the game open and allowed Quinnipiac to move to 15-10-1 on the season, 8-4 in the Northeast Conference.
Sophomore Joe Duffy pitched a strong seven and two-thirds innings, giving up two earned runs on eight hits while striking out four to earn his second win of the season.
“Today the fastball wasn’t there but I had my slider which I’ve been developing all year,” Duffy said. “Mike Marmo called a great game; we’re always on the same page.”
The Bobcat scoring started in the bottom of the second inning when senior Jeff Mainetti opened the inning with a single to right field.
After senior Pete Kummerfeldt walked, senior Wilson Matos ripped a double down the third base line scoring Mainetti and advancing Kummerfeldt to third.
Junior John Delaney drove in Kummerfeldt on a sacrifice fly to the left fielder. Senior Ryan Rizzo would cap off the scoring with a single up the middle which plated Matos from second giving Quinnipiac an early 3-0 lead.
Wagner would get one run back in the top of the fourth inning when senior second baseman Randy Gress misplayed a groundball allowing senior Joseph DiGeronimo to score from second.
A double to the gap in the top of the seventh by Kevin McDonnell put runners at second and third with one out, which brought head coach Dan Gooley out to the mound to talk to Duffy.
“I just wanted to calm him down,” said Gooley. “I told him, ‘we have to take it pitch by pitch here. We have a chance to shut them down right here.'”
Duffy gave up a sacrifice fly to senior Pat Rogers making the score 3-2 and ended the inning one batter later by educing a groundball to the shortstop.
Quinnipiac showed its resilience, as it had all weekend, in the bottom of the seventh inning. With the infield in, Delaney ripped a single up the middle to plate Ryan Ullrich and give Quinnipiac the 4-2 advantage. Delaney made a wide turn at first nearly getting picked off as the throw came in behind him. However, the relay throw got past the Wagner first baseman and landed out of play, awarding Delaney third base.
The error would prove costly as the next hitter up, senior Tim Binkoski, hit a groundball through the right side of the infield to score Delaney from third, ending the day for Wagner pitcher AJ Pirozzi. Mainetti doubled off of the centerfield fence to score Binkoski and Gress, making the score 7-2.
Kummerfeldt would officially put the game out of reach as he smoked a first- pitch fastball from pitcher Matt Watson over the right field fence for the two-run homerun.
Wagner would score two more runs in the eighth off of a two-run home run by freshman Vin Avella making the score 9-4. Duffy was lifted in favor of junior Tyler Brett who shut down the Wagner bats for the rest of the game.
The win was just one in a series in which the Bobcats were able to pull out four crucial conference wins.
The ‘Cats pulled out close wins in game one and game three, winning 10-9 and 7-6 respectively. In game two, sophomore Andy Mayer tossed a complete game without surrendering an earned run as the Bobcats rolled, 5-2.
Gooley feels great with the win as well as his team’s sweep. “To win four games against one team is very difficult,” Gooley said. “I’m thrilled. We’re 8-4 in the conference so we feel pretty good about ourselves. I feel great.”
Quinnipiac will host the University of Vermont today at 3 p.m. before hitting the road this weekend to take on Long Island University. The fact that LIU is currently in last place in the NEC with a record of 2-9 doesn’t mean anything to Gooley.
“We’ll have our hands full,” Gooley said. “They may be in last place but they are a talented bunch of kids.”
Rizzo stressed the need to not underestimate LIU in their upcoming series.
“It’s a conference game, we know what our goals are going into the series, but we have to make sure we take them one game at a time,” he said.