The Central Connecticut baseball team hit four homeruns and got five shutout innings of relief pitching in a 9-2 win at LIU Brooklyn to cap the regular season on Saturday in Brooklyn, NY. The Blue Devils won in Northeast Conference action for the 11th time in 12 games and will be the No. 2 seed at the conference championship beginning Thursday. Central closes the regular season with a 26-20 overall record and 16-8 in NEC play.
CCSU will play third-seeded Wagner on Thursday at the NEC Championship at Dodd Stadium in Norwich, CT.
The Blue Devils opened the scoring with a two-out homerun in the top of the first by sophomore TT Bowens. It was Bowens' first of two on the day.
LIU would tie the game in the bottom of the third on a two-run homerun by Brock Hallum, but that would be all the scoring they would get. CCSU would end the third inning with a triple play, going around the horn, and the Blue Devils' pitchers would only allow four hits after the homerun over the final 7.0 innings.
The Blue Devils tacked on two runs in the fifth via a pair of home runs to pad their lead. Sophomore Jake Siracusa led off the inning with a solo shot and sophomore Jay Devito hit an inside-the-park homerun with one out to push the lead to 6-2.
CCSU added two runs in the eighth and another in the ninth for the final score. Bowens hit a solo homer, his second of the day, to lead off the eighth. Stephens added an RBI single with two outs to make it 8-2. A bases-loaded walk to junior Buddy Dewaine would force in a run and close out the scoring in the game.
Central's bullpen did not allow a hit over the final four innings and only allowed a pair of walks to protect the lead and clinch another weekend series win. The Blue Devils went 6-2 in weekend series' and won 11 of 12 conference games to close the regular season.
Sophomore Matt Shane (3-3) got the win, throwing 2.0 scoreless innings and allowing just two hits and a walk with a strikeout. Senior Jared Gallagher tossed 3.0 shutout innings to pick up his eighth save of the year. He allowed one walk and struck out two. Senior Patrick Mitchell started and allowed two runs in his 4.0 innings of work.
Bowens led the Blue Devils' offense, going 4-for-5 with two runs and four RBIs. Junior Dave Matthews added three hits and Kanios and Bertochi each had two more as CCSU banged out 17 hits as a team. Every Central starter had at least one hit in the game for the second time in the series.
CCSU will play third-seeded Wagner on Thursday at the NEC Championship in the opening round at Dodd Stadium in Norwich, CT. The time of game will be announced. All games at the NEC Championship will be streamed live, and for free, on NECFrontRow.com.