April 23, 2014

QU Baseball Falls To Connecticut, 5-3

The Quinnipiac University baseball team lost to the University of Connecticut, 5-3, in a non-conference match-up at the QU Baseball Field in Hamden, Conn. With the loss, Quinnipiac drops to 15-18 overall while UConn improves to 21-19. 

The Bobcats held leads of 1-0 and 2-1 before a four-run eighth inning gave UConn the edge. Nick Fabrizio (Peabody, Mass.) logged seven innings on the mound, and took the no-decision after holding UConn to one run on five hits while striking out four. Matthew Osieja (Wyckoff, N.J.) took the loss after giving up four runs in the eighth. Mike Palladino (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) broke-up UConn starter Andrew Zapata's no-hit bid while also driving in one run and scoring another. Matthew Batten (Shelton, Conn.) and Rob Pescitelli (Bayshore, N.Y.) also drove in runs for the Bobcats. 

In the second inning, Vincent Guglietti (East Haven, Conn.) hit a towering drive to deep center fielder that was misplayed by UConn's center fielder, allowing Guglietti to advance to third on the play. Guglietti broke for home on Pescitelli's  slow roller to first base to give Quinnipiac a 1-0 lead.

Fabrizio held UConn scoreless, striking out four batters, over the first three innings. In the fourth, Connor David reached on a fielder's choice on a ground ball that retired Vinny Siena at second for the second out of the inning. After Griffin Garabedian walked, Jack Sundberg singled home David to tie the game at 1-1.

Meanwhile, UConn's Andrew Zapata held Quinnipiac hitless through 5 2/3 innings before Mike Palladino (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) lined a two-out single to left field in the sixth innings. Palladino gave Quinnipiac a 2-1 lead when he scored from first on Batten's double to right-center field.

In the seventh, Fabrizio 100th pitch of the day retired Tommy Verdi to start the inning before he got Bryan Daniello to pop out for the second out of the inning. He then walked UConn's Blake Davey before Bobby Melley singled the opposite way, down the left field line, to move Davey to third base. Fabrizio induced a ground ball from Max McDowell for the final out of the inning to preserve the Bobcats' lead.

Fabrizio was lifted in the top of the eighth in favor of Osieja. Osieja got Siena to pop-out to center field before Connor David and pinch-hitter Nico Darras lined back-to-back singles through the Bobcats' infield. Osieja retired Jack Sundberg on an infield fly before Osieja walked Tom Verdi to load the bases with two outs. Bryan Daniello lined a single to right-center field to push two runs across to give UConn a 3-2 lead. Verdi then scored on a passed ball to give the Huskies a 4-2 lead, as Daniello moved to third on the play. Oseija then walked Blake Davey before Bobby Melley doubled to left center drive before Daniello home and give UConn a three-run lead.

UConn's eight inning barrage knocked Osieja out of the game as he was tagged for four runs on four hits, while walking two, over 2/3 of an inning pitched. He was replaced by senior Nic Civale (East Windsor, Conn.) a utility player making his debut on the mound. Civale got Max McDowell to pop out to end the inning before sitting down UConn in order in the ninth.

In the eighth, Zapata got Donaghue to pop-out before Mike Blumenthal (Dix Hills, N.Y.), hitting for Brian Ruditys, walked. Matthew Oestreicher, hitting for Dale Long, lined a two-strike offering from relief pitcher Ryan Radue to the right field wall to move Blumenthal to third while he cruised into second with a double. Palladino's ground ball to third scored Blumenthal to pull Quinnipiac within two runs, 5-3, through eight innings.

UConn's David Mahoney came on in the ninth, retiring all three batters he faced for his fifth save of the year.

Quinnipiac is back in action this weekend when it takes on Radford University in a three-game series on Apr. 26-28 in Radford, Va.