NEWARK, Del. (April 23, 2013) – Sophomore Jon Young (Old Bridge, N.J.) pitched a career-long 6.2 innings in his first collegiate start and senior Nathaniel Roe (Plainfield, N.J.) closed it out to lead Rutgers baseball to 4-2 road win over Delaware at Bob Hannah Stadium Tuesday. Junior Ross Costello (Egg Harbor Township, N.J.) slammed his second home run of the season to provide offensive support.
The victory put the Scarlet Knights back at .500 at 19-19, while the Blue Hens fell to 26-13. It was only the fifth loss in 21 home games for UD.
Young (2-0) was sharp on the mound and worked into the seventh inning with two runs allowed. The right-hander struck out four and only walked one batter in the outing to pick up his second victory in as many weeks. Roe surrendered just one hit and one walk in the last 2.1 frames to earn his third save of the year. Delaware entered the day hitting .324 as a team (fifth-best nationally), averaging 7.4 runs per game (13thbest nationally).
At the plate, junior Nick Favatella (Washington Township, N.J.) extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a pair of knocks. Senior Charlie Law (Mainland, N.J.) also had two doubles on the day and made a challenging catch on a foul pop near the fence to flash leather at first base.
Rutgers jumped out to a 2-0 lead right away in the top of the first inning on three hits. With one out, Favatella doubled into the left field corner and immediately came home on an RBI single through the right side by sophomore Vinny Zarrillo (Forked River, N.J.). Then with two outs, Law landed a ball down the right field line for a double to pick up his team-leading 31st RBI of the season.
After Young worked a perfect bottom of the inning, Costello extended the lead in the second to 3-0 on solo home run to center field on a 3-1 pitch. It was his third career long ball.
The Blue Hens put up a run on the board in the fourth on an RBI double by D.J. Long to make it 3-1. However, Young limited the damage by stranding a pair of runners to keep the lead.
The Scarlet Knights added an insurance unearned run in the seventh on a two-out RBI double by senior Jeff Melillo (Annandale, N.J.), but the Blue Hens answered with an RBI single by Jimmy Yezzo to make it 4-2. Roe was then summoned from the bullpen and recorded a fielder’s choice groundout to strand the tying runs on base.
In the ninth, UD put two on with one out to threaten against Roe. However, the veteran buckled down to induce a fly out and struck out Yezzo – the nation’s leading hitter by average (.459) entering the day – to preserve the win.
Dan Gatto (3-2) took the loss for the hosts after permitting three earned runs. He had defeated BIG EAST opponent Villanova in his previous start.
Rutgers will be back at Bainton Field Wednesday to take on Wagner at 3 p.m. Senior Pat O’Leary (Sparta, N.J.) will make the start on the mound, as the game will be called by WRSU.
Favatella has now started the last 125 games … Zarrillo is on an 11-game hit streak … RU is 10-2 when hitting a home run and 10-3 when not committing an error … the game last 2:28 was played with temperatures in the 50s.