April 2, 2009
PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. - Freshman Adam Nelson (St. Joseph, Mo.) was 4-for-4 with five runs scored and hit his first collegiate home run on Wednesday afternoon as Villanova (14-12) downed Coppin State (0-14) by a 21-3 score on a cold and damp day at the Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth. The game was halted after the top half of the seventh inning due to deteriorating weather conditions.
The Wildcats tallied their highest run total in nearly eight years in the big win, which featured five straight innings with multiple runs scored from the second inning through the sixth. Nelson was making his fourth start of the year behind the plate and he finished with two singles, a double and a solo home run that was part of a four-run second inning. Villanova used 21 different players in the game and had 15 different hitters reach base safely.
A two-run single by Harry Williams in the top of the first inning spotted the Eagles a 2-0 lead and the Wildcats went down in order in the bottom half of the inning. Villanova got things going quickly in the second though, as senior Matt McFolling (Chicago, Ill.) drew a leadoff walk and scored two pitches later when senior Joe Cotter (Bryn Mawr, Pa.) homered to left field to tie the game at 2-2. Two outs later, Nelson hit a solo shot to put the Wildcats ahead and senior Joe Rosati (Havertown, Pa.) added a two-out single for a 4-2 lead.
The lead grew to 14-2 for Villanova, which also scored the game's final seven runs after Coppin State added its final run in the top of the fifth inning on a sacrifice fly by Williams. Cotter and freshman Marlon Calbi (Montclair, N.J.) drove in three runs apiece for the Wildcats and four other players had two RBI.
In addition to putting 15 hits on the board, Villanova drew 10 walks and was hit by a pitch four times. Freshman Tyler Sciacca (Staten Island, N.Y.) was 1-for-1 with two walks and three runs scored and classmate Cuyler Esposito (Marietta, Ga.) had a run scored and an RBI despite three trips to the plate without an official at-bat. He was hit by a pitch twice and walked once.
On the mound, freshman Tom Tesauro (Lawrenceville, N.J.) earned his first collegiate win with three innings pitched. Working on a pitch count, Tesauro (1-1, 8.71 ERA) allowed just one hit and struck out two in his outing, while allowing only the two earned runs in the first inning. He retired seven of the last nine batters he faced before yielding to freshman Jerry Battipaglia (Katonah, N.Y.), redshirt freshman Will Hebard (Winnetka, Ill.) and freshman Julian Diaz (Trenton, N.J.). Battipaglia struck out four over two innings, while Hebard and Diaz each fanned two in an inning of work.
Lonnel Bush doubled and scored two runs for the Eagles, while Williams accounted for all three of the team's runs batted in. Elgin Thomas (0-2, 10.80) allowed eight hits and 10 runs (six earned) in three innings to register the loss.
Villanova goes on the road for a three-game conference series this weekend at Notre Dame. The Wildcats are making their first visit to South Bend, Ind., since 2005. The series opener is on Friday evening at 5:05 p.m.
NOTES: The last time Villanova scored 20 or more runs in a game was in a 24-2 victory over Philadelphia University on April 10, 2001 ... Nelson was 3-for-14 on the season before more than doubling his season hit total in the game Freshmen Anthony Porcelli (Wantagh, N.Y.) and Sean Campi (Princeton, N.J.) each recorded their first collegiate hits in the game ... A steady drizzle with occasional heavier bursts of rain fell throughout play.