Late-Inning Heroics Continue as Delaware Baseball Steals a 3-2 Victory in Extra Innings Over Towson in CAA Opener
March 8, 2013
TOWSON, Md. –Late-inning clutch hits by Joe Giacchino and Jimmy Yezzo (at right) provided the University of Delaware baseball team a 10-inning 3-2 victory over Towson University in the Colonial Athletic Association opener on a blustery Friday afternoon at John B. Schuerholz Park.
After being held scoreless since the second inning and trailing 2-1 with one out the top of the ninth, Delaware’s Cameron Travalini lined a single into right field and gave the Hens a chance to tie the game. Yezzo extended his hitting streak to 22 games with a run-scoring double to the right-center field gap that plated Travalini and knotted the game at 2-2.
Entering the top of the 10th inning still tied at 2-2, pinch-hitter Jake Clark rocketed a double down the left field line and advanced to third after Ty Warrington dropped a perfectly-placed bunt single down the third-base line. With runners on the corners, Giacchino smacked a RBI double into left field that drove in Clark for the eventual game-winning run.
In his third inning of relief in the bottom of the 10th inning, Stephen Richter would eliminate the Towson batters in order en route to his second win of the season. Richter threw three hitless innings of relief with four strikeouts in his longest appearance of the season.
“That is probably one of the best games this program has played in the last three to five years,” said Delaware head coach Jim Sherman. “From a fan’s standpoint you couldn’t ask for much more with pitching, defense, and clutch hitting.”
Delaware improves to 7-4 overall and 1-0 in the CAA while Towson drops to 6-5 overall and 0-1 in the conference. Of the last five games that the Blue Hens and Tigers have played, four have been one-run games.
“Tip my cap to Towson’s starter and their defense,” said Sherman. “I knew they would come out and give us tough game today after news of the program being discontinued earlier in the day.”
Nick Ferdinand scored the Hens first run on a Tyler Powell RBI ground out in the top of the second inning.
Five of Delaware’s eight hits were tallied in the ninth and 10th innings as eight different Blue Hens batters collected base knocks in the extra-inning win. Giacchino’s hitting streak reached seven games while Zach Lopes has tallied hits in six straight games.
Towson’s only runs came in the bottom of the first when Andrew Parker slugged a two-run home run over the left field fence. Center fielder Brandon Gonnella collected three of Towson’s five hits in the ballgame.
Reliever Mike Ryan (3-1) received the loss after the southpaw surrendered his first run of the season on three hits and two strikeouts in 1.2 innings pitched.
Delaware starter Chad Kuhl earned a no-decision as the right-hander yielded two earned runs on five hits, one walk and four strikeouts in seven innings of work.
Towson starter Mike Volpe was handed a no-decision after he tossed 8.1 innings with two earned runs on five hits, three walks and six strikeouts.
The Blue Hens and Tigers will continue their weekend series with game two of the three-game set on Saturday, March 9 at 2 p.m. at Schuerholz Park.
“Today’s win puts us in good shape for winning the series over the final two games,” said Sherman. “The guys truly believe they can win whether they are at home or on the road.”
Right-hander Adam Davis (1-2, 5.52 earned run average) will take the mound for Delaware while righty Paul Beers (0-1, 10.29 ERA) will start for Towson.