A Shutout of Mercyhurst and a Sam Goines Grand Slam against Saint Rose Gives Wilmington Baseball a Perfect 3-0 Opening Weekend
Base: #17 Wilmington 7 - Mercyhurst 0; #17 Wilmington 6 - Saint Rose 4
Sunday, February 23, 2014 - Colonial Heights, Va.
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Senior Josh Hampton hit two home runs on Sunday, one in each game, knocking in three runs for the day. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. All rights reserved.
Junior Sam Goines hit a go ahead grand slam in the seventh inning against Saint Rose on Sunday. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. All rights reserved.
Junior Ray Gambone tossed five scoreless innings against Mercyhurst, striking out five batters in earning his first win of the season on Sunday. Copyright 2013; Wilmington University. All rights reserved
Three pitchers combined for a 7-0 shutout over Mercyhurst before a late game comeback, 6-4, against Saint Rose gave the No. 17 Wilmington University baseball team a Sunday sweep to wrap up the weekend in the Dinwiddie Sports Complex tournament, played in Shepherd Stadium.
Ray Gambone, Jay Kluka, and Ryan Douglas combined for the shutout of Mercyhurst in Sunday’s early game, with Gambone earning the victory in five innings of work. Kluka, making his first appearance as a Wildcat, tossed three shutout innings with four strikeouts while Douglas, also making his first appearance as a Wildcat, tossed a scoreless ninth to seal the victory.
The Wildcats (3-0), ranked 17th in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, scored twice in the bottom of the first inning against Mercyhurst, before adding four more in the fourth to take a commanding lead.
With two outs and the bases empty in the first, Josh Swirchak reached base on an error by the third baseman, allowing Josh Hampton to the plate. Hampton delivered and hit his first home run of the season for the early 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats had the bases loaded with no outs in the bottom of the fourth, scoring the first run on a sacrifice fly by Joe Marciano. Mike Annone knocked in another run with a double, while Jesse Long added the third run with an RBI single. Frank Samluk’s RBI groundout capped the fourth inning scoring.
Gambone struck out five batters in his first game of the season, giving up three hits and two walks in a scoreless outing. Kluka followed with four strikeouts with only one walk while giving up two hits. Douglas closed out the game with a strikeout while only allowing one hit.
Wilmington needed a late game comeback in the nightcap of the day, falling behind Saint Rose, 2-0, after five full innings.
The scoring started with Hampton leading off the bottom of the sixth, smashing his second home run of the day to put the Wildcats on the board. After the Golden Knights scored a run of their own in the top of the seventh, the Wildcats broke loose with a five run seventh to take the lead.
The rally started with two outs and the bases empty, as Christian Adorno collected his second single of the game. With two men on after a Jon Castro walk, Swirchak singled in the inning’s first run. Hampton walked to load the bases, bring Sam Goines to the plate. Goines promptly launched his first home run of the season, clearing the bases for a grand slam and giving the Wildcats the 6-3 lead.
Jarrett Shaffer maneuvered through a scoreless eighth inning, before Tyler Fries tossed the ninth inning for the save, giving the Wildcats a three win weekend.
Fries was touched for run on a home run by Saint Rose’s Brian Maynard, but so was starter Frank Samluk in the fifth, as was Jake Wersinger in the seventh as Maynard walked away with a three home run, four RBI game.
Samluk went the first five innings, striking out five batters in the no decision while Wersinger picked up his first collegiate victory with two innings of work. Wersinger struck out three batters. Shaffer tossed a scoreless eighth with a strikeout before Fries picked up his first save with closing the door against Saint Rose.
Wilmington returns to action on Thursday as the weekend home series against Indiana (Pa.) was moved to Diamond Nation in Flemington, N.J. The Wildcats will play the Hawks twice on Thursday starting at 3 p.m., and twice again on Friday starting at 12 p.m.