Manhattan Rolls past West Virginia
RIVERDALE, N.Y. - The Jaspers erupted for seven runs in the first inning and never looked back as Manhattan (2-14) took a 13-11 decision over Big East member West Virginia (10-11) on Sunday afternoon in Morgantown, W. Va. Jaspers' senior reliever Taylor Sewitt earned his second win of the season in 2 1/3 innings out of the bullpen and junior right hander John Soldinger recorded his ninth career save.
Manhattan's (2-14) top offensive performance of the season was led by junior centerfielder Anthony Vega who posted three hits with three RBI and two runs scored. Jaspers' freshman left fielder Aidan O'Leary went 3-for-4 from the plate, including his second triple of the weekend, and he drove in two runs. Sophomore second baseman Chris Kalousdian had two hits and knocked home two runs and sophomore shortstop Yoandry Galan also hit 3-for-4 with a RBI.
The Jaspers wasted little time to bounce back after dropping two close decisions to the Mountaineers in Saturday's doubleheader. Manhattan's offense was clicking immediately with seven hits accounting for seven runs in the top of the first inning. Junior designated hitter Nick Camastro had a lead off walk followed back-to-back singles by Vega and junior third baseman Kyle Murphy to load up the bases. Junior catcher Ramon Ortega knocked in the first run with a sacrifice fly, before freshmen Vin Teixeira and Joe McClennan singled in the next two runs to take a 3-0 lead.
West Virginia starting pitcher Eric Hinkle faced the first six batters before being replaced by Pan Nakazato who got the last two outs of the first inning. Nakazato also had trouble settling Manhattan's game opening surge as he yielded a RBI single to Galan and Kalousdian drove in the next run. In Vega's second at bat of the frame he delivered a two RBI single to put Manhattan on top 7-0.
Despite the early setback, the Mountaineers didn't let Manhattan get away easy as the Jaspers used seven pitchers in total to earn the victory. Junior second baseman Brady Wilson homered in West Virginia's first at bat and then junior shortstop John Polonius knocked in the second run in the bottom of the first with a RBI single. West Virginia added another run in the second inning to pull within 7-3 on Bobby Boyd's RBI single.
Vega singled in a run in the third inning and then Murphy knocked in the second of the frame to put Manhattan on top 9-3. West Virginia answered in the bottom of the inning with Ryan McBroom's two run homer, but the Jaspers got the runs back in the top of the fourth inning with RBI singles from O'Leary and Kalousdian that gave the Jaspers an 11-5 cushion.
Three runs by West Virginia in a fourth inning which featured a two run homer by Max Nogay made it an 11-8 ballgame. The Jaspers and Mountaineers traded runs in the fifth with O'Leary delivering the RBI triple and Mountaineers' sophomore Nate Antone answering with a sacrifice fly getting within 12-9.
McBroom had his fourth RBI of the contest in the sixth inning and then a sacrifice fly in the seventh put West Virginia within 12-11. McBroom finished the day 3-for-4 with two runs scored. However, the Jaspers came up with the insurance run when O'Leary scored on a passed ball to give Manhattan a 13-11 advantage.
Soldinger retired the final three outs and recorded a strike out to seal the victory. Hinkle was credited with the loss falling to 0-3 on the year. He was responsible for five earned runs.
Manhattan returns to Riverdale for its home opener on Wednesday versus Hofstra. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Van Cortlandt Park.