Baseball Squanders Lead, Falls To Fairfield, 6-3
FAIRFIELD, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University baseball team lost a non-conference match-up to Fairfield, 6-3, at Alumni Diamond. Quinnipaic drops to 3-16 on the season while Fairfield improves to 9-14.
Fairfield plated the game's first run in the bottom of the 1st inning when Tyler Wosleger walked after O'Connell retired the lead-off batter. After O'Connell got Anthony Hajjar to fly out, Ryan Plourde delivered a two-out double to the left-center field gap to score Wosleger and give Fairfield an early 1-0 lead.
In the bottom of the second, Fairfield's Jack Giannini reached on a ground ball up the middle that Bobcats shortstop Scott Donaghue was able to chase down, but Giannini beat the throw. O'Connell hit Dean Sadik with a pitch before walking Salciconne to load the bases. Forrest Dwyer then made an incredible play behind second base to start the double play to end the Stags' threat.
In the top of the third, Dwyer got on base with a one-out line drive to right field for a basehit. He then moved to second when Fairfield starter Chris Kalica walked Jesse Ullrich (Orange, Conn.). After a double-steal moved both runners into scoring position, Scott Donaghue drove both runners in with a two-out double to the right center field gap to give Quinnipiac a 2-1 lead. After Zak Palmer (Mahwah, N.J.) walked, Kyle Nisson (Wallingford, Conn.) ground-out to first before Gabe Guerino (Milford, Conn.) drew a four-pitch walk to load the bases. Brian Ruditys' (Boothwyn, Pa.) bouncing ground ball was mishandled by Fairfield's third baseman, allowing Donaghue to score to give Quinnipiac a 3-1 lead.
In the bottom half of the inning, O'Connell walked Wosleger to start the inning before getting Anthony Hajjar to ground out to short. After Wosleger moved to third on a ball in the dirt, O'Connell walked Ryan Plourde to put runners on the corners for Billy Zolga. Zolga hit a towering fly to the left field wall that Ullrich was able to track down for the second out of the inning. With the sacrifice fly, Wosleger snuck home to pull Fairfield within a run, 3-2. After walking Ryan Donovan, Giannini hit a groundball to Donaghue at short that took a bad bounce as it reached the second-year infielder, loading the bases. O'Connell then struck out Sadik on three pitches to end the inning.
O'Connell was lifted after the fourth inning in favor of freshman Matthew Lorenzetti. O'Connell gave up two runs on three hits over four innings, but managed to pitch out of jams in each inning. Lorenzetti had a solid fifth inning, retiring Fairfield in order.
In the bottom of the sixth, Fairfield tied the game when Hajjar delivered a two-out, bases loaded single to score Sadik and knot the score at 3-3.
Ray Buckley (Orange, Conn.) entered the game for the seventh. Lorenzetti, despite giving up the game-tying run, was solid, scattering two hits while striking out two in two innings of work. In the eighth, Buckley walked the first two batters he saw before being lifted in favor of Matt Siciliano (Ardmore, Pa.). Hajjar bunted both runners over before Siciliano intentionally walked Plourde to load the bases. Siciliano then hit Zolga with a pitch, forcing one run in before walking in a run as he gave Donovan a base on balls. Fairfield took a 6-3 lead when Giannini hit a sacrifice fly to center field.
Quinnipiac returns to action on Wednesday, March 29 when it hosts Yale at Quinnipiac Baseball Field at 3 p.m. The Bobcats will then head to New Britain, Conn. this weekend for a four-game Northeast Conference series against Central Connecticut State University. Quinnipiac fans should refer to the Official Website of Quinnipiac Athletics, www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com, for the latest news, scores and highlights, as well as up-to-the-minutes schedule changes.