Quinnipiac Baseball's Season Ends With 5-2 Loss To Monmouth In MAAC Baseball Tournament

LAKEWOOD, N.J. – The Quinnipiac University baseball team's 2014 season ended with a 5-2 loss to Monmouth in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Baseball Championship tournament at FirstEnergy Park in Lakewood, N.J. With the loss, Quinnipiac's year ends at 18-31. It also marks the final game of head coach Dan Gooley's coaching career. 
Quinnipiac's Matthew Batten (Shelton, Conn.) was 2-for-3 with a RBI and a run scored whileMike Blumenthal (Dix Hills, N.Y.) was 1-for-3 with a run scored. Batten batted 6-for-11 for the three-game series, good for a team-high .545 average for the MAAC tournament. 

Monmouth jumped out to an early lead when it tagged Quinnipiac starter Nick  Fabrizio(Peabody, Mass.) for three runs. Grant Lamberton walked and went to third on Steve Wilgus' base hit, who then stole second base to put two runners in scoring position. Wilgus scored on Jake Gronsky's RBI-single up the middle. After Gronsky stole second, Wilgus scored on a wild pitch as Gronsky moved to third. Gronsky scored on a sacrifice fly by Danny Avella to give the Hawks a 3-0 lead.
Monmouth jumped out to an early lead when it tagged Quinnipiac starter Nick Fabrizio (Peabody, Mass.) for three runs. Grant Lamberton walked and went to third on Steve Wilgus' base hit, who then stole second base to put two runners in scoring position. Wilgus scored on Jake Gronsky's RBI-single up the middle. After Gronsky stole second, Wilgus scored on a wild pitch as Gronsky moved to third. Gronsky scored on a sacrifice fly by Danny Avella to give the Hawks a 3-0 lead.

In the bottom half of the inning, Matthew Batten (Shelton, Conn.) stroked his fifth hit of the MAAC Tournament with a single up the middle. Lou Iannotti's (North Haven, Conn.) come-backer to the mound was thrown away by Monmouth starter Jeff Singer. Vincent Guglietti (East Haven, Conn.) then drove a 3-and-2 offering from Singer down the left field line to score Batten as Quinnipiac moved within a run, 3-1, after one inning of play.

In the third, Wilgus and Gronsky singled to start the inning before Fabrizio struck-out Craig Sweeney for the first out in the inning. Avella then singled to the second-base hole where it was knocked down by Ryan Nelson (Knoxville, Tenn.). Nelson attempted to retire Avella at first, but his throw was off-line, allowing Wilgus and Gronsky to come around and give Monmouth a 5-1 lead.

In the fifth, Mike Blumenthal (Dix Hills, N.Y.) singled to center field before moving to second when Brian Ruditys (Boothwyn, Pa.) worked the count for a walk. After Mike Palladino (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) bunted both runners over, Batten then hit a fly ball to right field deep enough to score Blumenthal as Quinnipiac moved to within three runs, 5-2, through five innings.

In the seventh, Fabrizio was lifted in favor of freshman southpaw reliever Matthew Osieja (Wyckoff, N.J.), who appeared in a Quinnipiac record 25th game of the season. Osieja was perfect over 1 2/3 before giving way to Joseph Scaglione (Wyckoff, N.J.).

For head coach Dan Gooley, it was the final game of a career that started in 1977. Gooley coached at Quinnipiac from 1977 to 1987 before leaving to coach at the University of Hartford in 1988. He guided Hartford through the 1992 season before leaving college baseball to oversee Major League Baseball operations for the Starter Corporation, based out of New Haven, Conn. Gooley returned to Quinnipiac in 2002. For his career, he has 531 career wins - the most of all Quinnipiac coaches in University history. 430 of those wins came over 24 years as Quinnipiac's head coach, including 235 at the NCAA Division I level.