Baseball Rallies Late At Iona, Wins 8-4
NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. – After seeing yet another one of their games cancelled due to inclement weather, the University at Albany (14-20, 3-9 AE) hit the road once again, this time to play a single game at Iona (14-17, 7-5 MAAC). The Great Danes found themselves in a three-run deficit, but scored seven in the final two innings to win the game 8-4.
The Great Danes scored first, with one run in the top of the second inning. The second batter of the inning, Marc Wangenstein, drew a walk. The next batter, Matt Hinchy, hit a single through the right side that allowed Wangenstein to advance to third. Finally, Stephen Loreng reached first base safely on a fielder's choice that saw Hinchy thrown out at second and Wangenstein cross the plate for the score.
Iona tied the game at one in the bottom of the fourth, and then took a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the fifth. Iona extended its lead to 4-1 with one additional run in the bottom of the sixth.
A scoreless seventh led to a three-run, game-tying top of the eighth inning for UAlbany. Kyle Sacks, pinch hitting for Patrick Lagravinese, drew a leadoff walk. Two batters later, Evan Harasta hit a double to left field, allowing Sacks to score. Next, Kevin Donati reached safely on an error by Iona's shortstop while Harasta advanced to third. Donati stole second in the next at-bat, before Travis Collins grounded out to second, which advanced Donati to third and allowed Harasta to score. Donati scored in the next at-bat when Wangenstein reached safely on an error from Iona's pitcher.
In the top of the ninth inning, UAlbany added four more runs. The first two batters, Loreng and Nick Kondo, recorded outs. Matt Codispoti was the first Great Dane to reach base in the inning after he was hit by a pitch. Connor Powers was also hit by a pitch in the next at-bat. Harasta came to the plate and hit a single to center field that scored Codispoti. Powers then scored on a fielding error on the same play. Donati next hit a single to short, advancing Harasta to second. Collins hit a single to left, scoring Harasta. Wangenstein came up and hit a single through the left side that scored Donati, to bring the game and final score to 8-4 in favor of UAlbany.
Three Great Danes, Harasta, Collins, and Wangenstein, each had two hits in the game. Harasta and Collins each drove in two runs. UAlbany starter Angelo Spedafino lasted 3.1 innings, allowing one run on three hits with three strikeouts and one walk. Ray Weber pitched 2.0 innings in relief, allowing three runs (one earned) on three hits with a strikeout. David Hutchison pitched 0.2 innings, allowing one hit and one walk. Derek Balbierz and Hunter Torres combined for the final 3.0 innings, allowing two hits with three strikeouts and one walk between them
UAlbany scored eight runs on nine hits while committing one error. Iona scored four runs on nine hits, but committed four errors.
“I thought it was a real good game back and forth,” said head coach Jon Mueller. “We haven't come back in a game and finished one off in a while, and it was really good to do that. It was a good Iona team, probably one of the better teams they've had in some time. They're going to make some noise late in the year.”
The Great Danes will kick off an eight-game home stand this weekend when UMBC visits for three starting on Saturday.