Wildcats Drop Two to West Virginia in Saturday Baseball Action
April 17, 2004
PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA. - On Saturday, April 17th, at the Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth, the Villanova baseball team dropped a Big East doubleheader at the hands of the West Virginia Mountaineers, falling 2-1 in game one and losing 14-4 in game two. The Wildcats fell to 19-14-1 overall on the year with the day's two losses and 3-9 in Big East play. The Mountaineers improved to 11-20 overall and 3-9 in conference action.
West Virginia opened the scoring in the top of the third inning of game one. Third baseman Justin Richards lined a one-out RBI single up the middle off of Villanova starter Nick Allen to score second baseman Kyle Matuszek and give the Mountaineers a 1-0 lead.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, the Wildcats rallied with a run of their own to tie the game up at 1-1. Villanova had runners at first and third with one out, when first baseman Adrian Schau dropped down a suicide squeeze bunt. Angelo Petracca slid home safely on the play with the Wildcats' first run of the contest.
West Virginia looked to regain its lead in the sixth inning. With Lee Fritz on second base for the Mountaineers and one out in the top of the sixth inning, Villanova right-hander Mike Grodecki came on in relief of Allen. After advancing to third on a Grodecki wild pitch, Fritz came around to score one batter later on a sacrifice fly by designated hitter Kurtis Clintin, giving WVU a 2-1 lead.
The Wildcats had one last chance to rally in the top of the seventh inning. Designated hitter Danny Poydenis led the inning off with a double to right-centerfield. With two outs in the inning, pinch hitter Frank Cirone lined a hard single through the left side - too hard to score Poydenis who had to stop at third on the play. Villanova had runners at the corners with two outs, when centerfielder Kris Molloy tried to drop down a suicide squeeze. Molloy popped up the bunt attempt to first base, ending the game with the Wildcats stranding the tying and go-ahead runners on base.
Allen (2-3) took the loss for the `Cats, allowing two runs in five and one-third innings. Zac Kline earned the win on the mound for WVU, giving up just one run in seven innings
The Mountaineers jumped all over the Wildcats early in game two. West Virginia put together four hits in the top of the first inning before Villanova recorded an out - including a two-run home run by shortstop Grant Psomas. Before all was said and done in the inning, the Mountaineers scored eight runs on nine hits against Wildcat starter Mike Loree to take an 8-0 advantage.
West Virginia added three more runs the next inning to increase its lead to 11-0.
Villanova would score the game's next three runs - one in the third and two in the fourth - to trim the Mountaineer's lead to 11-3. Freshman catcher Andy Wendle scored the Wildcats' first run in the third, coming in from third on a ground ball double play. One inning later, Poydenis hammered a two-run home run to leftfield to make it an 11-3 game.
The Mountaineers would score three more times in the top of the sixth inning, however, as West Virginia went on for the 14-4 victory.
Loree (4-2) took the loss on the mound for the `Cats. Shawn Miller earned the win for WVU, allowing four runs in seven-plus innings.
Junior Joe McCoy and freshman Nate Hall each pitched well in relief for Villanova in game two. McCoy allowed just two earned runs in four and two-thirds innings. Hall threw three and a third scoreless innings, striking out two.
At the plate for the Wildcats in game two, Schau had a team-high three hits while Poydenis went two-for-three with a home run and two RBI.
For West Virginia, Psomas and Richards each had three RBI in the game.
Villanova and West Virginia will wind down the series on Sunday, playing a single game at noon, at the Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth.
Saturday was Alumni Day at the Villanova Ballpark at Plymouth. The Wildcats honored the 1989 Villanova team between games one and two on Saturday. The 1989 Wildcats came within one game of the College World Series.