(Bridgeport, CT) – The Sacred Heart Baseball team split a doubleheader with the Monmouth Hawks Friday afternoon, winning 7-4 before falling in 11 innings 5-2.
In game one, Sacred Heart jumped to an early 5-0 lead after batting around in the first. Dan Perez (Seymour, CT) walked with the bases loaded, Hunter Phillips followed with a two-run double down the left-field line, Connor McEvoy (Watertown, CT) added an RBI groundout, and Derick Horn (Valatie, NY) delivered an RBI single.
Monmouth chipped away with a run in each of the next four innings. Craig Sweeny singled in a run in the second, Jake Gronsky tripled home another in the third, Chris Perret hit a solo homerun to right field leading off the fourth, and the Hawks added another on a passed ball in the fifth.
The Pioneers added insurance on a perfectly executed suicide squeeze by Keaton Flint (Charlton, NY), who brought home Rocco Gondek (Glastonbury, CT) on a close play at the plate in the sixth. Troy Scribner (Washington Depot, CT) pitched a complete game for the win, going seven innings and giving up three earned runs on eight hits with five strikeouts.
In game two, the Pioneers took an early lead again in the first on back-to-back doubles to right by John Murphy (Seymour, CT) and Perez, then did not score again despite a number of chances.
Monmouth answered with a run in the second on a two-out RBI double by Steve Wilgus. The Hawks then tied it in the fourth on a squeeze bunt for a hit by John Guida.
The Pioneers nearly took the lead in the sixth when McEvoy hit a groundball to shortstop with pinch runner Jonathon Servilla on third. Servilla broke for home on contact and Guida sent a high throw to the plate, but catcher Tom Augustyniak blocked off the plate enough from Servilla, who missed the dish with a hook slide and was tagged out before he could get his hand in with a second effort.
Monmouth finally took the lead in the 11th with three runs. Boyd broke the tie with an RBI single to centerfield. He and Gronsky later both scored on an infield hit to first by Perret, who beat SHU pitcher Jeff Stoddard to the bag, to open up the three run lead. SHU would strand nine runners in the game, while Monmouth stranded 11.
Robbie Maguire (Brooklyn, NY) and John Hermanson (Milford, CT) both pitched well, but did not factor in the decision. Maguire went 8.0 innings, giving up two earned runs on eight hits with three walks and three strikeouts. Hermanson pitched three scoreless innings of relief, allowing just one hit with two strikeouts.
The Pioneers close out the regular season tomorrow at 1:00 pm in the finale of a four-game series with the Hawks. A SHU win or a Wagner loss in any of the Seahawks' next three games at Bryant would clinch a spot for the Pioneers in next weekend's NEC Baseball Tournament. The five seniors from the SHU Baseball Class of 2012 will be honored in a pregame ceremony tomorrow before the game.