PISCATAWAY, N.J. (May 12, 2013) – Eight of the nine hitters collected at least two hits as Rutgers baseball finished off a weekend sweep of Georgetown with a 13-11 win at Bainton Field Sunday. The victory improved the Scarlet Knights to 13-8 in the BIG EAST and 25-26 overall, while the Hoyas fell to 5-16 and 25-24.
Before the game, the team honored its 11 seniors in a pregame ceremony on the field. The 2013 class includes Rob Corsi (Oceanport, N.J.), Jerry Elsing (Montville, N.J.), Tyler Gebler (Toms River, N.J.), Sam Hasty (Brooklyn, N.Y.), Bill Hoermann (Toms River, N.J.), Charlie Law (Mainland, N.J.), Jeff Melillo (Annandale, N.J.), Pat O’Leary (Sparta, N.J.), Nathaniel Roe (Plainfield, N.J.), Rob Smorol (Clark, N.J.) and Steve Zavala (Randolph, N.J.).
Law and junior Brian O’Grady (Warminster, Pa.) led the way with three hits and three RBIs each in the game, with freshman Matt Tietz (West Milford, N.J.) and Zavala also notching three-hit days. RU racked up 47 hits in the three-game series, including a season-high 20 in the finale Sunday.
The bats from both teams came out swinging early with a combined seven runs and 10 hits in the first inning, with GU emerging with a 4-3 advantage. RU scored two of its runs on a single by Melillo and the other on a two-out knock by Law.
The hosts added a pair in the second when redshirt freshman John Jennings (Berkeley Heights, N.J.) and Tietz both led off with singles. Junior Nick Favatella (Washington Township, N.J.) promptly knocked in Jennings, as Tietz came around two batters later on a double-play grounder. RU took its first lead of the game via an unearned run in the third, with O’Grady singling home Law, who reached on an error.
On the mound, Roe calmed Georgetown at the plate by working three innings of relief with only one earned run allowed.
GU retook the lead with three runs in the fifth to go up 8-6, helped by a Rutgers error. The game would stay that way until the seventh, as closer Charlie Steinman kept the Scarlet Knights at bay in the middle innings.
Law led off the seventh with his fourth home run of the season over the wall in left field to restart the offensive attack. The rally continued as O’Grady reached on an error in the outfield and moved up to third on a sacrifice bunt by Hoermann. After the second out was recorded, Tietz reached on an error that allowed O’Grady to score as the tying run with two down. Favatella then followed with a clutch RBI single to right field to put Rutgers back in front. Georgetown was charged with five miscues in the ballgame.
Gebler entered in the eighth and stranded a runner in scoring position with one out by notching a looking strikeout and groundout to shortstop. In the bottom of the frame, the Scarlet Knights added four insurance runs to pad the lead. Melillo and Zavala both hit singles, and Law followed with another RBI hit on an 0-2 count through the left side. O’Grady next stepped up and laced a two-run triple to right-center, scoring himself on a sacrifice fly from Jennings two batters later.
Georgetown did not go down easy in the ninth, as they strung together three runs on five hits to put runners at first and second with two outs. In that situation, the Hoyas put the runners in motion, but Melillo easily fired to third to pick up his 21st runner caught stealing of the season. Gebler registered his second save and 15th in his career to move into sole possession of second-most in school history.
Freshman Howie Brey (Middletown, N.J.) (3-3) earned the win for RU after pitching two scoreless innings out of the bullpen. Steinman (4-3) suffered the loss for the visitors, as Corbin Blakey led all players with six RBIs in the game.
The Scarlet Knights conclude the home season at 12-6, having won three of four series at Bainton Field.
Having already clinched a spot in the BIG EAST Championships, Rutgers will finish the regular season with a three-game series at USF starting Thursday. The two teams have not met on the diamond since April 10, 2011.