March 12, 2013
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Both teams came out swinging and eventually combined for 25 runs and 25 hits as Villanova (3-10) lost to Saint Joseph's (6-10) by a final score of 15-10 at Smithson Field on Tuesday afternoon. Freshman first baseman Kevin Jewitt (Wes t Chester, Pa.) had three doubles and two runs batted in for the Wildcats, who matched a season high with their 12 hits.
During the first four innings of the game Villanova had leads of 3-0, 7-3 and 10-4 but the Hawks scored 11 unanswered runs in the bottom of the fifth and sixth innings to reverse the game's momentum. Six runs in the bottom of the fifth inning tied the score at 10-10 and Saint Joseph's finished the onslaught with five more runs in the home half of the sixth. Neither team scored in the late innings of the contest.
Jewitt went 3-for-5 while starting at first base for the first time this season and senior center fielder Paul Rambaud (Chicago, Ill.) had two hits and two RBI to extend his streak of reaching base safely in every game this season. Senior left fielder Steve Schrenk (Brigantine, N.J.) also had a two-hit game and went 2-for-5 with two runs scored and an RBI.
In the top of the first inning freshman second baseman Eric Lowe (Arlington Heights, Ill.) singled with one out and later scored on a fielder's choice. In the second inning Jewitt and Rambaud each drove in runs as the Wildcats extended their lead to 3-0.
Saint Joseph's scored three runs with two outs in the bottom of the second inning to tie the score at 3-3, with a two-run home run by Quinn Renner being the big hit for the Hawks in the inning. Both teams had five extra-base hits in the game and Saint Joseph's finished the day with two home runs, two doubles and a triple.
In the top of the third inning Villanova was back at it offensively, as Schrenk, Jewitt and Rambaud all had RBI doubles in a four-run inning. Three more runs came home in the top of the fourth inning when sophomore third baseman B.J. Bochicchio (Moosic, Pa.) delivered an RBI single and two more runs scored on an error with two outs.
Senior starting pitcher Kevin MacLachlan (Matawan, N.J.) led 10-4 going to the bottom of the fifth inning but that was when the Hawks began to shift their offense into high gear. MacLachlan departed with one out and one runner on base in the fifth inning, with the Wildcats leading 10-6 at that point. The lead had evaporated for good by the end of the inning however, as Saint Joseph's sent 10 men to the plate against three Villanova pitchers and scored five runs on seven hits.
After the Wildcats touched up the Hawks first two pitchers for 10 hits and nine runs in the first three-plus innings the final three pitchers used by Saint Joseph's combined to pitch six innings and allow just two hits and one unearned run while collecting 11 strikeouts. The second pitcher for the Hawks, Mike Muha, allowed four runs in two-thirds of an inning but also had three hits and hit a solo home run of his own which help jumpstarted the Saint Joseph's rally.
James Harrity (1-0, 1.29 ERA) pitched three scoreless innings from the sixth through eighth innings to earn the win, while freshman Max Beermann (Tampa, Fla.) was on the losing end of the decision for Villanova.
Junior relief pitcher Chris Haggarty (Valley Stream, N.Y.) pitched three scoreless innings of relief for the Wildcats and struck out four while retiring nine of the 10 batters he faced. The three innings pitched and the four strikeouts were each career highs for Haggarty, who has a 0.77 ERA over 11 2/3 innings this season, while tying for the team lead with seven appearances.
Villanova returns to action at home tomorrow afternoon to take on University of the Sciences at 3:15 p.m.
NOTES: Rambaud and Schrenk are each riding six-game hitting streaks ... Rambaud is the only player on the team to reach base safely in all 13 games this season ... He is batting .286 with a .397 on-base percentage ... Jewitt is the first Wildcats hitter with three doubles in a game since Connor Jones achieved the feat at West Virginia last season on April 6, 2012 ... Jones had three doubles in a game twice during the 2012 season ... The other game this season in which Villanova had 12 hits was against Valparaiso on March 5.