QU Baseball Splits Doubleheader with Fairfield, Winning Game One 4-3 in 10 Innings and Losing Game Two, 8-4

QU Baseball Splits Doubleheader with Fairfield, Winning Game One 4-3 in 10 Innings and Losing Game Two, 8-4

HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac baseball team split a doubleheader Saturday afternoon as they took game one 4-3 in 10 innings over the Fairfield Stags before falling in game two, 8-4. With the doubleheader split, the Bobcats move to 16-18 (9-5 MAAC) on the season while the Stags are 8-23 (4-10 MAAC) after the split.

The Bobcats were led offensively in the first inning by Mike Palladino (Rockville Centre, New York) as he went 3 for 5 with a leadoff double to start the game. Palladino went 1 for 1 in game two to pick up his fourth hit of the game before leaving the game in the third inning.

Vincent Guglietti (East Haven, Connecticut) went 2 for 2 in game two of the doubleheader as he set a new career-high with his sixth home run of the season as well as a double and a hit by pitch. Ben Gibson (Sagamore Beach, Massachusetts) also went deep for the Bobcats as he was 2 for 3 in the second game with a solo home run, his second long ball of the season.

Matthew Lorenzetti (Marlboro, New Jersey) picked up his first victory of the season as he pitched two scoreless innings of relief with a pair of strikeouts in the first game of the doubleheader. Lorenzetti (1-0) pitched in his team-leading 19th game of the season in the victory.

The Bobcats continue to dominate first innings this season as they scored one run in the first inning of game one followed by three first inning runs in game two.

Game One

Palladino led off game one with a double to left centerfield before being advanced to third base a productive groundout from Scott Donaghue (Marlboro, New Jersey). Matthew Batten (Shelton, Connecticut) flashed a late bunt to the right side of the infield to score Palladino and reach via the single to give the Bobcats a 1-0 lead.

The Bobcats took a 1-0 lead into the sixth inning where Fairfield responded for the first time in the game. Brendan Tracy led off the game with a double to right field. With a 2-0 count and  two outs in the inning, starting pitcher Thomas Jankins (West Brookfield, Massachusetts) spun around and fired a throw to second base to pick off Tracy. The ball and tag each beat Tracy to the bag but he was called safe. Michael Conti followed up the play with an RBI single up the middle to score Tracy to tie the game.

Quinnipiac responded in the bottom half fo the sixth inning as Palladino singled to lead off the inning followed by a Donaghue walk and Batten hit by pitch. Ryan O'Connor came into the game for Fairfield starting pitcher EJ Ashworth just before Kevin Radziewicz let a passed ball go to the backstop to bring home Palladino. With runners on second and third, Guglietti lifted a fly ball to left field which was caught by Mac Crispino with a diving catch. Donaghue tagged and scored on the play before Batten was doubled up on second base.

Fairfield proceeded to tie the game once again the top of the seventh inning as Jankins allowed a leadoff infield single to Witkus before advancing on a wild pitch. Radziewicz moved Witkus up to third base before scoring on another infield single by Crispino. Sebastian Salvo then ripped a double to deep centerfield which scored Crispino from first. Gary Binkiewicz (Scotch Plains, New Jersey) came on in relief of Jankins and retired the next two batters to end the inning.

Jankins finished the game with 6 1/3 innings pitched allowing three runs on nine hits with a game high seven strikeouts.

Both teams threatened late in regulation but neither could get a run across the board. The Bobcats scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the tenth inning to win their 16th game of the season. Once again, the Bobcats put together a two-out rally as Palladino reached on an infield single and advanced to second base on a throwing error by the shortstop. After Donaghue was hit by a pitch, Batten flared a ball down the right field line. With the rightfielder, first baseman and second baseman all converging on the ball, second baseman Michael Conti dropped the fly ball that allowed Palladino to score from second base.

Game Two

The Bobcats jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning after Palladino led off the second game with another double and advanced to third on Donaghue's sacrifice bunt. Batten ripped a single to centerfield to score Palladino. With Batten standing on second base, Guglietti ripped a long home run over the right centerfield fence for his sixth home run of the season.

Fairfield got two runs back in the top of the second inning as starting pitcher Wyatt Hamilton (Falmouth, Massachusetts) issued five consecutive walks before giving way for Taylor Luciani (Berlin, Connecticut), who got the Bobcats out of the bases loaded jam.

In the bottom of the second inning, Gibson led off with a solo home run to deep left field to double the Bobcats lead at 4-2.

However, the Bobcats extended lead did not last as Fairfield got three runs in the top of the third inning to take the lead for good. Sebastian singled home Sal Ciccone after a lead-off double and advanced to second on an error by the Bobcats new centerfielder, Matthew Payero (Corona, New York). Later in the inning, Drew Arciuolo singled home Jake Salpietro and Tracy to give the Stags a 5-4 lead.

Fairfield added three more runs in the top of the fifth inning to closes out the scoring. After another leadoff double, this time by Ciccone, Salvo singled to centerfield to make it 6-4 Stags. Tracy stepped into the box next and ripped a two-run home run down the right field line as give Fairfield an 8-4 lead.

Mike Wallace (2-4) took the win as he went the distance in game two for the Stags as he allowed four runs on nine hits with no walks and two strikeouts. Luciani (1-3) got the loss for the Bobcats as the right hander allowed six runs on seven hits in four innings of work with three strikeouts. Mike Davis (Sandy Hook, Connecticut) came on in the sixth inning to pitch two scoreless innings of relief with a strikeout.

The Bobcats return to action Sunday afternoon when they wrap up the three-game series with the Stags at the QU Baseball Field with first pitch scheduled for 12 P.M.