Baseball Wins Season Opener at Florida Gulf Coast, 6-3

Feb. 26, 2010

Final Stats

FORT MYERS, FL - Sophomore Rocco Gondek (Glastonbury, CT) drove home pinch runner Jonathan Servilla (Fairfield, CT) with a single in the top of the eighth inning to help the Sacred Heart baseball team defeat Florida Gulf Coast University in the 2010 season opener Friday night.

The Pioneers got a pair of unearned runs in the first inning to take a 2-0 lead. Mike Drowne (S. Hadley, MA) led off the game with a walk, stole second, went to third on an errant throw by the pitcher, and scored on an error by the center fielder on a ball hit by Steve Tedesco. Jeff Heppner singled to put runners on the corners with no one out. Mike Olszyk grounded into a double play to short that plated Tedesco with the second run.

FGCU responded with two runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning off SHU starter Jared Balbach (Pine Bush, NY). After a pair of Eagle singles, Zach Maxfield laced a 2-2 pitch into the right center gap with one out that scored both runners.

Left fielder Austin Gaines gave the Eagles a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the third with a double to right center with two outs.

SHU tied the game in the top of the sixth inning off FGC reliever Jason Forjet on a triple to left center by sophomore Hunter Phillips (Monroe, CT) that scored Chris Whittemore who had walked with the bases empty and two outs.

Sophomore James Ineson (Milford, CT) relieved Balbach in the sixth inning and pitched two scoreless frames, walking two and striking out two.

Whittemore walked with one out in the top of the eighth inning and Servilla came on to pinch run. Senior JJ Edwards (Endwell, NY) singled to put runners on the corners. Rob Matthews came on in relief for the Eagles and got Phillips to line out to third base for the second out. Gondek then took and 0-1 pitch to center for the RBI that put the Pioneers ahead.

The Pioneers got a couple of insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning on a sacrifice fly by Jeff Heppner and an RBI single by freshman John Murphy (Seymour, CT).

Mike Korevec (Greenwich, CT) relieved Ineson in the bottom of the eighth and worked two scoreless innings to earn his first collegiate save.

The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 11 am.