RIVERDALE, N.Y. – The Manhattan College baseball team earned its first win of the 2008 campaign this evening topping South Alabama 14-11 at Stanky Field. Freshman designated hitter Chad Salem knocked in four RBIs and went 3-5 in the winning effort. Sophomore right-hander Tom Moran earned the victory in relief.
The Jaspers got on the scoreboard in the top half of the first when sophomore outfielder Kevin Nieto singled to knock in Mark Onarati who walked earlier that inning. Nieto had two RBIs on the evening.
South Alabama (3-3) answered back in the bottom of the inning when the Jaspers’ sophomore starting pitcher Tom Costigan walked four straight to even the game. He then threw a wild pitch allowing the second run of the inning.
Salem put Manhattan (1-3) back on top in the fourth with a two out, single up the middle knocking in Austin Sheffield and Dom Lombardi. Manhattan held a 3-2 advantage entering the bottom half of the inning.
South Alabama responded again with a four-run bottom of the fourth. Clint Toomey connected on a clutch three-run triple to regain the lead. Soon thereafter, Toomey scored on a Ryne Jernigan sacrifice fly which extended its lead to 6-3.
The Jasper offense erupted for 10 runs over the fifth and sixth innings to take a commanding 13-8 advantage. Manhattan added another run in the seventh and suppressed a late Jags rally to preserved the victory.
Senior right-hander Matt Nevins got the Jaspers out of a bases loaded jam with nobody out in the bottom of the eight. Nevins got the final six outs of the contest striking out three.
Onorati, Sheffield and Lombardi each scored three runs. Lombardi had three hits on the afternoon and also knocked in three runs.
Jose Behar, Ruben Perez and Eric Nieto each had two hits on the evening.
Manhattan returns to action tomorrow afternoon for a doubleheader with South Alabama. The opening game begins at noon.