DATE: April 6, 2013
NEW CASTLE, Del. - - A pair of tightly contested Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference victories pushed the Wilmington University baseball team’s win streak to 12 straight, defeating Felician College, 1-0 and 6-2, on Saturday afternoon at Wilson Field.
The 12 straight victories are now two short of the all-time program record since joining NCAA Division II, behind only the 2010 and 2011 teams that went 14 straight. The win in game two also set a new program record, as the Wildcats (25-9, 12-1 CACC) won for the 12th straight time inside the CACC, breaking the old record of 11 set twice before.
The first game ended in a quick two hours and seven minutes, featuring only six hits and one run combined. Senior Dave Hatt carried a no hitter into the seventh inning, recording two outs before surrendering Felician’s (10-21, 3-6 CACC) first hit, a single into center field.
Hatt also worked around two out walks in the second and fifth innings, and picked off a runner in the sixth after and error allowed the Golden Falcon batter to reach. After the no-hitter was broken up in the seventh, Hatt continued to pitch strong, not allowing a runner to advance past first base the entire game. The Golden Falcons also recorded singles in the eighth and ninth innings, but were left stranded, or picked off, to secure the shutout.
The Wildcats got all the offense they would need in the third inning, using their legs and to steal the only run of the game. Jordan Johnson hit a one out double down the right field line to get the inning going before swiping third base. Jon Castro was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and third. Trying to get into scoring position, Castro took off for second on a pitch. The throw from the Felician catcher was cut off short of the second base bag by the shortstop that turned and fired back home as Johnson was barreling to the plate. The throw was late and Johnson slid home safe for the 1-0 lead.
Hatt tossed his first complete game shutout of the year, recording nine strikeouts while only giving up three hits and two walks. He needed only 107 pitches to get through the nine innings of work, improving to 5-0 on the year. Felician went with Vic Monteagudo who tossed the first 7.1 innings, striking out a pair while giving up three hits and three walks.
Johnson went 2-for-4 in game one, hitting his seventh double of the year. Matt Lopes was the only other Wildcat to record a hit, going 1-for-4 in the game.
The day’s second game was easier for the fans, as the Wildcats scored five runs in a span of three innings to break away from a 1-1 and 2-2 tie to secure the sweep. Frank Samluk went the first six innings for the Wildcats, allowing two runs on three hits while striking out five batters to move to 3-0 on the year. Jarrett Shaffer, Tyler Fries, and Nick Marics nailed down the end of the game, each tossing a scoreless inning.
The ninth got a bit hairy for Marics, as the Golden Falcons made a late charge with two outs in the inning. After a leadoff single, Marics locked down the first two outs of the inning before running into trouble. A walk and a hit off the end of the bat just out of the reach of Marics loaded the bases with the tying run coming to the plate for Felician.
Lopes nonchalantly went through the signs to Marics to the tying run at the plate, but the junior whirled and fired to a flashing Jonathan Rodriguez at second who beat the runner to bag and easily tagged the runner out for the pick off and the final out of the game.
The offense started with a pair of solo home runs from Josh Hampton and Lopes, as Joe Marciano and Brandon Payne also had extra base hits. Johnson went 2-for-3 in game one, scoring two more runs to up his CACC lead to 40 runs on the season. Hampton went 2-for-3 with two RBI’s while Payne and Sam Goines each went 2-for-4 in the game.
Wilmington closes out its four game home stand with a single, nonconference matchup against Shippensburg on Tuesday at Wilson Field. Shippensburg received 14 points in the latest NCBWA National Top 25 Poll with Tuesday featuring two top teams across NCAA Division II. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.