RICHMOND, Va. – Eight members of the Holy Cross baseball team's starting lineup registered hits against Virginia Commonwealth, leading the way to a 9-3 win over the Rams in the nightcap of the second day of action at the Terry Sisisky Classic on the Diamond. With the result, the Crusaders improve to a record of 4-7 while the Rams fall to 5-8 on the season. The senior class consisting of Nick Ciardiello (Edison, N.J.), Jack Laurendeau (Sudbury, Mass.), Brendan McCrea (Hicksville, N.Y.) and Eric Oxford (Danvers, Mass.) combined for six of the squad's RBI, totaling seven hits and four runs scored.
Virginia Commonwealth scored first, collecting a RBI single off junior starter John Pedrotty (Portsmouth, R.I.). The Crusaders answered with a three-run second inning, capitalizing on two VCU errors. Freshman Andrew Barry (Puyallup, Wash.) picked up the first RBI on a groundout, scoring Ciarrdiello who reached on a fielding error. McCrea then singled to right center to score the next two runs, rounding freshman Mike Ahmed (East Longmeadow, Mass.), who was hit by a pitch, and sophomore Stephen Wadsworth (Wayland, Mass.), who reached on the second error.
A total of four Holy Cross runs came across through the third and fourth innings. In the third, Laurendeau came around to score the team's second run after singling and stealing second and third base. Ciardiello scored Laurendeau on a sacrifice fly while junior Steve Tkowski (Bourne, Mass.) and Wadsworth took advantage of two more VCU infield errors, scoring the next two runs to give the Crusaders a 6-1 lead. Oxford made it a 7-1 game in the fourth, scoring Laurendeau on a single to right center. The Rams then tagged Pedrotty for two runs on two hits in the bottom of the fourth, pulling within four runs, 7-3.
Barry, Laurendeau and Oxford combined for two runs and three hits in the top of the sixth, increasing Holy Cross' lead back to six runs, 9-3. Laurendeau notched a RBI double to score Barry while Oxford followed with a RBI single to score his senior classmate. Pedrotty did not allow another hit after the fourth inning and was relieved by sophomore Andrew Boyce (Avon, Conn.) in the top of the seventh, leaving the squad with its six-run cushion. Boyce shut the Rams down over the final three innings, striking out four of the nine batters he saw and allowing one base runner on a walk. Holy Cross would not need to score again, taking home the final 9-3 victory.
Pedrotty picks up his second win of the season to improve to 2-1. He finished with six strong innings pitched, allowing three runs on four hits and striking out three. Boyce collects the first save of his career after pitching the last three innings, keeping the Rams from scoring again. Rams starter Kyle Haynes falls to 1-3 on the season after allowing eight runs (three earned) on seven hits in five innings pitched. In all, Holy Cross scored nine runs on 11 hits, making two errors while the Rams scored three runs on four hits, making four errors.
Holy Cross returns to action for its final match-up in the Terry Sisisky Classic tomorrow, March 13, playing Princeton at 12:00 p.m.