HAMDEN, Conn. – Senior John Sills (Milton, Mass.) hit a one-out, two-run single down the right field line in the top of the ninth inning to boost the Holy Cross baseball team to a 6-4 victory over Quinnipiac at the Quinnipiac Baseball Field. With the final, the Crusaders sweep the two-game series, improving to 4-7 overall while the Bobcats drop to 0-12 on the season. Sills collected a season-high three RBI on the day with a 2-for-4 plate appearance to lead Holy Cross offensively.
The Crusaders scored first, earning one run in the top of the first inning. With two outs, senior Matt Perry (Sudbury, Mass.) reached on a fielding error and advanced to second after junior Eric Oxford (Danvers, Mass.) walked. Fellow junior Nick Ciardiello (Edison, N.J.) capitalized on the scoring opportunity as he followed with his fifth double of the season, scoring Perry for his 11th RBI this spring. Quinnipiac answered with two runs in the bottom half of the inning to take a 2-1 lead, earning one run on a Holy Cross error and another run on a wild pitch by starter Matt Croglio (Fayetteville, N.Y.).
Both Croglio and Quinnipiac starter Kyle Birdsall returned to form, allowing just one collective hit over the next four innings. The Bobcats would take the upper hand, however, as they forced Croglio out of the game after scoring two runs on four hits, including a two-run double in the bottom of the sixth inning, marking the score at 4-1.
Holy Cross would begin to come back, earning two runs on three hits in the top the seventh inning. The first run came on a throwing error by Quinnipiac’s pitcher, as freshman Alex Maldonado (Brooklyn, N.Y.) scored in a failed pickoff attempt from third base. Sills then connected for his first hit of the day, bringing junior Jack Laurendeau (Sudbury, Mass.) home on a two-out single up the middle. After seven innings, the Crusaders were now behind by one run, 4-3.
The come back came full circle for the Crusaders in the top of the ninth inning. The bases became loaded for Sills after Birdsall walked two batters and allowed a double by Laurendeau. Sills then singled down the right field line after the Bobcats turned to their bullpen, scoring sophomore Chris Sintetos (Bethesda, Md.) and Laurendeau for the go-ahead runs. Perry followed with a double to left center, scoring junior Brendan McCrea (Hicksville, N.Y.) for the sixth and final run of the game, propelling Holy Cross to a 6-4 advantage. Senior Ryan George (Seekonk, Mass.) came in to close for the second consecutive game, striking out two of the three batters he faced in the bottom of the ninth inning to defend his squad’s two-run lead as Holy Cross won by the final score of 6-4.
Senior Chris Blanchard (Norwich, Conn.), who replaced Croglio in the sixth inning, registered the winning decision for Holy Cross, moving to 1-1 on the season. He finished the contest pitching three strong innings, allowing just two hits and striking out one batter. George tallied his third save of the season. Quinnipiac pitcher Derek Lamacchia would take loss, going to 0-2 this season. He pitched just over one inning, allowing three runs on one hit. In all, Holy Cross scored six runs on seven hits while Quinnipiac scored four runs on seven hits. Both teams left six men on base.
Holy Cross will host Connecticut next at Fitton Field this upcoming Tuesday, March 23. First pitch is set for 5:00 p.m. in Worcester, Mass.