WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Gallaudet University baseball team threw away a chance to make a statement against North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) first-place leader Penn St.-Abington on a picturesque Friday afternoon at Hoy Field. The Bison led 6-2 through two innings in the second game but that's when the Gallaudet defense allowed the Nittany Lions back in the game and eventually aided them in scoring eight runs in the decisive sixth inning. Penn St.-Abington escaped with a 16-8 win to go with its 7-5 victory in the first game.
Gallaudet (14-19, 5-5 NEAC West) committed one or more errors from the third inning through the sixth. In total the Bison made a season-high nine errors in the eight-run loss. The sweep snapped a three-game win streak the Bison held and ends Gallaudet's 12-game homestand with a 6-6 mark.
Penn St.-Abington (15-16, 9-1) scored eight runs off eight hits in the sixth inning where the Nittany Lions were aided by three Bison errors. That inning broke open a tightly contested ballgame that Gallaudet controlled until the fifth inning when the Nittany Lions scored three runs to take over the lead at 8-7. Abington finished the game with 20 hits that included four doubles and the seventh home run of the season for Daniel Hill.
The teams both hit the starting pitchers hard in the second game as Gallaudet chased Brian Camp from the game after three innings where he allowed seven runs (six earned) off 10 hits as he walked two and struck out one. Abington forced junior Ryan Hastings (Cherry Valley, Mass.) out of the game before he could complete the third with two outs. Hastings allowed four runs on seven hits as he walked one. The two teams combined to hit nine doubles, eight of which came in the first two innings.
Junior outfielder William Chapman (Los Angeles, Calif.) went a perfect 3-for-3 at the plate for the Bison as he scored a team-high three runs, hit two doubles and drove in two runs. Freshman William Bissell (Brewer, Maine) matched Chapman with three hits, two doubles, two RBI and scored once. There were six different Bison that recorded two or more hits in the loss. Abington had seven different players record two or more hits led by first baseman Tom Boyd's four hits, two of which were doubles. Both teams left a lot of runners on base as the Nittany Lions stranded 11 while the Bison left eight.
In the first game, the Bison missed their opportunities as they left the bases loaded twice (first and fourth innings) and had runners on second and third base in the second inning but came up with no runs on those three occasions.
Abington starting pitcher Anthony DiVincenzo (4-2) survived those innings and came away with his fourth win of the season as he went five innings where he allowed one run on four hits, walked one and struck out three Bison. Reliever Kevin Faber surrendered four runs in the sixth inning before Robert Morak came on to earn his third save of the season as he pitched a scoreless seventh.
It was a rough start for Gallaudet ace pitcher Zane Noschese (Pittsburgh, Pa.) as he only recorded one inning pitched, he was pulled in the second inning. Noschese (5-1) suffered his first loss of the season as he allowed four runs on seven hits. Chapman pitched the remainder of the game where he allowed three runs (zero earned) off five hits, one walk as he struck out six.
The Bison trailed 4-0 after two innings and had to slowly chip away at the lead. GU pushed across a run in the third before the Nittany Lions added three runs in the fourth as the Bison made two errors. Gallaudet's big inning came in the bottom of the sixth as the Buff and Blue scored four runs off Faber. GU was down 7-5 with one out, Chapman on first base and clean-up hitter Bissell stepping to the plate. Unfortunately for the Bison, Bissell lined into a double play to end the inning and get Faber out of the jam.
Gallaudet and Penn St.-Abington were slated to face each other on Saturday, April 16, but the twin bill was moved up one day to avoid the rainstorm slated for the region tomorrow.
The Bison will hit the road on Sunday, April 17, for the only time this month during the regular-season as GU heads to Middletown, Pa., to face Penn St.-Harrisburg for a NEAC doubleheader. The first game is slated to begin at noon.