Game One (html)
 Game Two (html)

NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware swept a Colonial Athletic Association baseball doubleheader from Towson Friday afternoon at Bob Hannah Stadium, defeating the Tigers by scores of  7-5 and 11-1.

With the pair of victories over Towson (19-31, 5-15 CAA), the Blue Hens (27-20, 12-8 CAA) clinched a spot in the 2017 Colonial Athletic Association Tournament set for May 24-27 at UNCW.

The Hens will return to the postseason after missing the CAA Tournament a year ago, the only time over a five-year span that has happened.

“Again we received great pitching,” Delaware head coach Jim Sherman said. “Both [Nick] Spadafino and [Ron] Marinaccio were excellent today. The guys coming out of the bullpen did well too, so it's a good day. Anytime you get a conference doubleheader sweep it's hard to find negatives. Calvin Scott had a great day and Doug Trimble started to get going in the second game. I thought [Jeremy] Ake was also outstanding in game two, driving in six.”  

In game one, the Blue Hens defeated Towson by a 7-5 margin as Delaware got solo home runs from Scott and Nick Patten. Scott went 3-4 in the opener while Patten and Jordan Glover each produced a pair of hits.

Glover, seeing his first action since breaking his hand April 21 at Elon, produced a pair of hits in both games.

In the opener, the Blue Hens received six strong innings from junior Nick Spadafino. The Dover, Del. native allowed just two hits and one earned run over the six innings. Spadafino (5-3) earned his fifth win of the season, tying him with James Meeker for the team lead.

Meeker, who started the first game at shortstop, produced a clutch two RBI bases loaded single that gave the Hens a 4-2 lead in the sixth. The two-run hit made Spadafino the pitcher of record.

Reliever Colman Vila earned his first save of the season as he pitched three innings and was helped when the Hens added two late insurance runs.

In game two, the Blue Hens turned in one of the most complete efforts of the season. In the 11-1 triumph, UD received key contributions up and down the lineup.

Starter Ron Marinaccio (2-2) pitched one-run ball over seven innings and struck out seven Towson batters to earn his second victory of the season. The righty allowed just two hits, one of which was a solo home run.

The Blue Hens scored twice in the second, enjoying a 2-1 lead heading into the bottom of the fifth.

In the bottom half of the fifth, the Hen's scored four runs. The big hit of the inning was a full-count three-run home run to left field by shortstop Jeremy Ake.

Ake took the first pitch he saw from Towson reliever Dean Stramara over the left field wall. He also added a pair of doubles and drove in a career-high six runs in the nightcap.

The Blue Hens added two runs on Brian Mayer's two-run home run in sixth before adding a run in the seventh and two more in the eighth.

“Glover really didn't look like he missed anytime today,” Sherman added. “He gave us some really outstanding at-bats and that's a great sign. I thought [Nick] Tierno playing in the second game was a great sign going forward. He looks a bit rusty with his timing but it's huge having those two back. It really changes the way our lineup flows. We're starting to get healthy again at the right time.”

The game two victory pushed Delaware into third place in the CAA, just one game out of the top spot. The top two finishers in the conference earn an important bye for the first round of the double-elimination conference tournament.

Delaware and Towson will take Saturday off and then conclude the series on Sunday at 1 p.m. Senior Kevin Milley will take the ball for the Hens while right-hander Michael Adams is the projected Towson starter.

“Kevin has had a little rest after not starting last Sunday at N.C. State,” Sherman added. “He looks like he's had enough time off to rest his arm, which was sore. Hopefully he can come out with a good effort. Heading into Sunday we still have Meeker and Burk FitzPatrick who both didn't pitch today, so we should be in great shape heading into Sunday.”

HEN SCRATCHINGS:
•  Delaware improves to 19-3 when scoring at least six runs and to 13-1 when scoring in double digits
• The Blue Hens are 11-1 when hitting two or more homers
• The Hens are 19-3 at Bob Hannah Stadium this season, including 7-1 in CAA play
• Tierno returned to the lineup for the first time since April 29 against UNCW.
• Patten hit his team-leading 10th home run of the season in the opener
• Mayer hit his 10th home run of the season in the second game
• Scott went 6-9 on Friday afternoon, extended his hitting streak to 17 games, and is now batting .352 for the season
• Ake is hitting a team-best .354 and is fourth on the team in RBIs. 

MEDIA INFORMATION: Contact Andrew Stern | Anwstern@udel.edu | Office: 302-831-6519 | Cell: 914-589-9666