The Central Connecticut baseball team dropped a 2-1 decision to Hartford on Saturday at Dunkin' Donuts Park. The Blue Devils mounted a late rally, but came up just short to the Hawks who held on for the one-run victory.
Central slips to 7-11 overall on the season with the setback, while Hartford improves to 6-16 overall.
The Blue Devils return home on Tuesday, Aprili 3, to host Quinnipiac at CCSU Baseball Field at 3:00 p.m.
The game started as a pitcher's duel between CCSU junior Mike Appel and Hartford's Nathan Florence. The two tossed matching shutouts through four innings, although Hartford put together back-to-back hits with two outs in the third for the first threat. Drew DeMartino singled and Nick Campana followed with a double to left field. DeMartino tried to score on the play, but he was cut down at home with a strong throw to keep the game scoreless.
CCSU would get a runner in scoring position in the top of the fifth for its first scoring threat of the day. Freshman Jake Siracusa would single and move to second, but Hartford would manage to get the final out of the inning to escape unscathed.
The Hawks managed to break the deadlock in the fifth. Hartford strung together four hits in the inning. Siracusa cut down Zachary Ardito at third on a hit-and-run single by Drew Holtgrieve. Holtgrieve moved over to third on a single and came home on an infield hit by Campana to make it 1-0.
Hartford doubled the lead in the sixth after loading the bases with one out. Ardito would hit a sacrifice fly to center field to bring home Ashton Bardzell to make it 2-0.
Central would get back-to-back singles with one out from sophomore Buddy Dewaine and Siracusa in the sixth inning. A fielder's choice would put runners on the corners before Nathan Florence recorded his 12th strikeout of the day to end the threat.
The Hawks would make a pitching change to open the eighth inning and CCSU took advantage with consecutive singles by freshman Jeremy Sagun and sophomore Chris Kanios to open the inning. Freshman Peyton Stephens would hit a comebacker to the pitcher who tried to make a play at third, but the throw was off the mark, loading the bases with no outs. Senior Mitch Guilmette would deliver a sac fly to right field bringing home the Blue Devils' first run to make it 2-1, but Hartford was able to avoid further damage in the inning.
Appel threw 5.0 strong innings for Central, but would take the loss. He struck out four without allowing a walk, but gave up two runs on eight hits. Junior Tom Curtin and Stephens would throw 3.0 shutout innings of relief, allowing just one hit and one walk, while striking out three.
Siracusa had a pair of hits for Central at the plate. Sagun would go 1-for-3 with a run scored, while Guilmette drove in the Blue Devils' lone run.
Florence would go 7.0 innings for the victory, allowing just five hits and no runs, while striking out 12 walking one. Seth Pinkerton closed the game for the Hawks picking up his fourth save.
Campana and DeMartino each had two hits for the Hawks at the plate.
CCSU is back home on Tuesday, Aprili 3, to host Quinnipiac at CCSU Baseball Field at 3:00 p.m.