SALISBURY, Md. – The Salisbury University baseball team swept visiting Southern Virginia University on Saturday afternoon by scores of 4-3 in game one and 14-3 in game two. The Sea Gulls used a walk off and an offensive outburst to bounce back in Capital Athletic Conference play.
Game 1: Salisbury 4, Southern Virginia 3
Salisbury jumped out to an early, 1-0 lead in game one but soon found themselves trailing 3-1 heading into the bottom of the ninth inning. The Sea Gull offense had been held at bay while Pete Grasso did his best to keep the Knights stagnant, as well.
After scoring one run in the third inning the maroon and gold had managed just two hits heading into the ninth, both of which came in the bottom of the fourth inning. However, the offense found its rhythm in the bottom half of the ninth.
Tom LaBriola, who had been held without a hit his previous three trips to the plate, knocked a double into right field to lead off the inning. Jack Barry looped a single into left field the next at-bat giving the Gulls runners on first and third with no outs. Colby Dean, who had also been held hitless until this inning, stepped to the plate and belted a bases clearing triple to right field knotting the game at three apiece. Scott Ardoin ended the game the next at-bat knocking a high sacrifice fly to right field to score Dean and give the Sea Gulls their second walk-off win of the season, 4-3.
Overall, Salisbury notched three of its seven hits in the inning scoring three runs total. Grasso finished the game going eight strong innings allowing just five hits and two earned runs while striking out four. Andrew Kramer picked up his first win of the season for the maroon and gold going one inning allowing two hits but most importantly no runs or walks while striking out two.
Game 2: Salisbury 14, Southern Virginia 3
The Sea Gulls (16-7, 8-1 CAC) completed the sweep with an offensive outburst in game two totaling their third highest run output and second highest hit total of the season cruising to a 14-3 victory.
Once again Salisbury jumped out to an early lead, 3-0, in the bottom of the first and never looked back. LaBriola got the scoring started recording one of his three hits of the afternoon singling through the right side to plate Justin Meekins for the 1-0 advantage. Jay Perry singled through the left side a few batters later to stretch the lead to 2-0, scoring Grasso.
After being held scoreless in the second the maroon and gold would score 11 runs over the next three innings including eight in the bottom half of the third. LaBriola started the outburst with an RBI double, his first of two that inning, down the right field line plating Grasso to stretch the advantage to 4-0. Simon Palenchar got in on the hit fest knocking an RBI single through the right side to score LaBriola. Kevin Dean followed suit a few batters later knocking one of his two hits of the afternoon through the right side to score Ardoin to stretch the advantage to 8-0. Back-to-back RBI doubles by Grasso and LaBriola capped the scoring in the inning leaving the Sea Gulls with an 11-1 lead after three on the Knights (8-19, 2-7 CAC).
Overall, 12 Salisbury batters came to the plate in the third totaling nine hits, one hit by pitch, eight runs, and leaving one runner on base. Six different players recorded an RBI in the inning while LaBriola notched two.
The Sea Gulls scored three more runs between the fourth and fifth inning, which gave way for Head Coach Troy Brohawn to make some substitutions. Throughout the game 25 different Sea Gulls, including pitchers, entered the game.
Ten different Salisbury players recorded a hit in the game with LaBriola going a team-high 3-for-3 from the plate with three RBI and two runs scored. Grasso finished the game going 2-for-3 with two RBI and three runs scored while Perry, Palenchar, and Kevin Dean were the only other three Gulls to tally a multi-hit game combining to go 6-for-8 with four RBI and three runs scored. Will O'Hara tallied his first hit of the season finishing the game 1-for-1.
Connor Reeves picked up his third win of the year going five innings pitched, allowing just one run and five hits while striking out two. Devin Conroy, Dillon Waters, and AJ Korczynski finished the game combining to go four innings pitched allowing four hits and one earned run to go along with five strikeouts.
Salisbury returns to action on Tuesday, March 28, when it travels to Washington (Md.) College to complete the two-game series with the Shoremen. First pitch is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.