BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – The Quinnipiac University baseball team was swept by Sacred Heart, 6-1 and 5-4 in 10 innings, in a Northeast Conference doubleheader at the Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, Conn. With the losses, Quinnipiac drops to 5-22 in the NEC and 6-36 overall while Sacred Heart improves to 14-9 in league play and 17-26 overall.
Kyle Nisson (Wallingford, Conn.) had four hits and three runs scored in the twin bill while Vin Guglietti (East Haven, Conn.) was 2-for-2 with a walk in the first game, and the game-winning RBI in the second game. Nic Civale (East Windsor, Conn.) was 2-for-4 in the second game, with a pair of doubles as well as the game-tying RBI. Spencer Kane (Wolcott, Conn.) took the loss in the first game to drop to 3-6 on the season after giving up six runs on six hits in five innings pitched. Kane struck out five in the loss. Nick Fabrizio (Peabody, Mass.) went 9 2/3 innings in the second game before being lifted with the go-ahead run on base.
Sacred Heart wasted no time in getting on the board when Kane walked Keaton Flint to start the game. After he was sacrificed over to second, John Murphy's single to center moved Flint over to third base. Dan Perez then hit a ground ball to short that should have been a double play, but was misplayed allowing Flint to score and give Sacred Heart a 1-0 lead. Kane then struck out Hunter Phillips before Kyle Nisson (Wallingford, Conn.) gunned down Murphy who was attempting to steal third base.
Quinnipiac threatened in the fourth as Forrest Dwyer (Wakefield, R.I.) and Nisson led off the inning with a pair of hits. Zak Palmer (Mahwah, N.J.) attempted to bunt Dwyer over but SHU starter Troy Scribner played the bunt to third to retire Dwyer. Vin Guglietti (East Haven, Conn.) hit a ground ball between Sacred Heart's first and second basemen, but was knocked down by Hunter Phillips. Nisson attempted to score but was thrown out at the plate before Nic Civale (East Windsor, Conn.) ground out to end the inning.
In the bottom half of the inning, Murphy led off the inning with a single on a ground ball to second base that took a hitter-friendly bounce over Dwyer. Perez followed with a ball to the gap in right-center field that score Murphy. Dwyer took the relay from Civale and right and attempted to throw out Perez at third base but his throw was high and landed out of play, allowing Perez to score and give Sacred Heart a 3-0 lead.
In the top of the sixth inning, Jesse Ullrich (Orange, Conn.) led off the inning with a line drive to left field. After Dwyer struck out, Nisson rifled an offering from Scribner the opposite way for a base-hit. Palmer then hit a ground ball through the left side of the infield. Ullrich took an aggressive turn around third, drawing the throw from the left fielder that was off-line. Ullrich attempted to score, but Scribner played the ball off the backstop and to Sacred Heart's catcher in-time for the out. Nisson scored when Scribner bounced a pitch to the plate as the Bobcats pulled within two runs. Guglietti then walked before Civale flew out to end the inning with Quinnipiac trailing, 3-1.
In the bottom half of the inning, Kane walked walked Bill McDonough to start the inning before giving up a single to Murphy. Perez then drew a walk before Phillips doubled over the head of Quinnipiac's center fielder to bring all three runners around and give Sacred Heart a 6-1 lead. Matthew Siciliano (Ardmore, Pa.) came on in relief for Kane.
In the second game, Sacred Heart took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning when Nick Fabrizio (Peabody, Mass.) hit Perez with a pitch to start the inning. Phillips dropped down a bunt that Fabrizio elected to throw to second base. Fabrizio's throw was off-line, allowing Perez to move to second base. After retiring Charmello and Scribner, Rocco Gondek single to score Perez and give the Pioneers a one-run lead.
In the top of the fifth, Palmer walked with one out before Sacred Heart starter Robbie Maguire got Guglietti to fly out for the second out of the inning. After Civale worked the count before walking, Gabe Guerino (Milford, Conn.) hit a ground ball through the left side of the infield to score Palmer from second and tie the game at 1-1.
In the bottom of the sixth, John Murphy crushed an offering from Fabrizio by a sliding Dwyer at second for a hit and then moved to second on a wild pitch. Perez followed with a double down the right field line to score Murphy and give Sacred Heart a 2-1 lead. With John Servilla pinch running, Fabrizio got Phillips to pop-up to left before Charmello hit a blooper to right field to score Servilla and give Sacred Heart a two-run lead, 3-1.
In the top of the seventh, Nisson drove the first pitch from Sacred Heart closer Jeff Stoddard to right-center field for a double. Palmer followed with a single to score Nisson and pull Quinnipiac within a run, 3-2. After Guglietti bunted Palmer over to second base, Civale delivered with an RBI double off the left-center field wall as Palmer tied the game at 3-3. The hit knocked Stoddard from the game, who blew the save, in favor of John Hermanson. Hermanson got Guerino to ground out before walking Scott Donaghue (Marlboro, N.J.) and getting Brian Ruditys (Boothwyn, Pa.) to hit a ground ball to short for the final out of the inning.
In the bottom of the seventh, Fabrizo retired Rocco Gondek before Dave Boisture beat a throw from short and moved to second on a throwing error. After a wild pitch from Fabrizo moved Boisture to third, Flint popped the ball up to shallow left for the second out of the inning. McDonough then flew out in foul territy to end the Pioneers threat and send the game to extra innings.
In the top of the eighth, Ullrich led off with a single up the middle. After Hermanson struck-out pinch hitter Mike Blumenthal, Nisson hit a ground ball to short. Sacred Heart's shortstop's throw to second sailed wide of the bag, allowing Ullrich to move to third and Nisson to second with one out. Palmer then ground out to third before Guglietti ground out to end the inning.
In the 10th, after Blumenthal lined out to first, Nisson and Palmer followed with back-to-back hits before Guglietti also singled to score Nisson from second base with the go-ahead run. In the bottom half of the inning, Kenny Byram hit a two-out single up the middle before Phillips lined a double down the left field ine to score Byram and tie the game. The hit knocked Fabrizio out of the game, who lasted 9 2/3 innings, giving up four runs on 11 hits while striking out seven. Siciliano came-on in relief for Fabrizio. McEvoy delivered with a single through the infield to score Phillips with the game-winning run.
Quinnipiac and Sacred Heart conclude their four-game series on Sunday, April 28 at 6 p.m. at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, Conn.