Baseball Falls To UConn, 4-2, In Game Called For Darkness After Rain Delay

The Quinnipiac baseball team lost to the University of Connecticut, 4-2, in a game called for darkness in the bottom of the seventh after it was delayed by over an hour at J.O. Christian Field in Storrs, Conn. With the loss, Quinnipiac drops to 9-11 while UConn improves to 16-9.

Freshman Kevin Sustad (Merrick, N.Y.) started and pitched one inning of hitless, scoreless baseball, holding UConn to one runner in the first. After the two teams resumed play after a lengthy rain delay, that at one point turned to snow, junior Ryan Walsh (Stamford, Conn.) took the mound for the Bobcats, holding UConn to two runs, only one of which was earned, while striking out six and letting up five hits over four innings. 

In the third, freshman Steffen Herter (Amherst, Mass.) drew a two-out walk before swiping his team-leading fifth base of the game. Herter moved to third on a throwing error by UConn's third baseman, that also allowed Brian Ruditys (Boothwyn, Pa.) to reach base. Ruditys moved to second on a ball in the dirt before Mike Palladino (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) walked to load the bases. Herter gave Quinnipiac a 1-0 lead when he scored on a wild pitch. 

Walsh struck-out three of the first four batters he faced in the second inning before giving up a lead-off walk in the third. After a passed ball and a base hit by the Huskies, LJ Mazzilli hit a sacrifice flyball that scored Eric Yavarone to tie the game, 1-1. 

After UConn re-took the lead on a Bobby Melley RBI-single that scored Bryan Daniello, Quinnipiac tied the game in the top of the seventh. Nic Civale (East Windsor, Conn.) reached on an error, moving to second on the play. After Forrest Dwyer (Wakefield, R.I.) struck-out, Jesse Ullrich (Orange, Conn.) walked to put runners on first and second. With Mike Blumenthal (Dix Hills, N.Y.) pinch running for Civale, Ruditys delivered a two-out single to right field to tie the game at 2-2.

In the bottom of the inning, Mazzilli singled to right field. After Quinnipiac reliever Kevin Castodio (Pawcatuck, Conn.) retired Vinny Siena for the second out of the inning, Mazzilli stole second to move into scoring position before Daniello walked. Melley then drove a pitch over to right field that scored Mazzilli and Daniello - that latter signaled the end of the game by the umpire crew on account of darkness. 

Quinnipiac is back in action on Wednesday, Apr. 3 when it hosts Dartmouth for its 2013 home opener at 3 p.m. at Quinnipiac Baseball Field in Hamden, Conn. The Bobcats will also play its first home NEC series of the year when it hosts Sacred Heart on Apr. 5-7.