Pioneers Fail to Stop Blackbirds Rally in Series Opener

Pioneers Fail to Stop Blackbirds Rally in Series Opener

BROOKLYN, N.Y.—The Sacred Heart baseball team was unable to stop the comeback from LIU as the Blackbirds took the series opener 9-7 at LIU Field on Thursday afternoon. The Blackbirds (22-25, 12-11 NEC) rallied from a 6-0 deficit to top the Pioneers (18-34, 11-13).

Sacred Heart got going early in the ballgame as senior Ted Shaw led off the contest with a single up the middle. He came around to score on fellow captain, Keith Klebart's RBI single to left field giving SHU the 1-0 lead. SHU added another run in the second inning on a RBI fielder's choice from freshman Stephen Thibault.

The Pioneers found their groove in the top of third as they added four more runs to take the 6-0 lead. Junior Anthony Capozziello opened the scoring with his RBI single up the middle. Junior Cody Doyle, Thibault and Shaw followed that up with two-out RBI singles to give SHU the advantage.

Sophomore Brent Teller had the Blackbirds at bay through the first four innings thanks in part to two double plays early on. LIU came knocking in the bottom of the fifth as Charles Misiano roped the RBI triple to deep right field to get on the scoreboard. Dom Paiotti followed that up with a RBI double down the right field line. Harrison Preschel had an RBI hit by pitch and Anthony Capo laced a two RBI single to bring the score to 6-5 and ending Teller's afternoon. Andrew Smith tied it for the Blackbirds with his sacrifice fly to left field.  

SHU took the lead again in the top of the sixth as freshman Elijah Brown roped the two-out double to left field and then scored on Klebart's single through the left side. LIU took the lead in the bottom half of the inning on RBI doubles by Andrew Turner and Joe Curcio off sophomore Jackson Aldam. LIU added an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh on Paiotti's single to take the 9-7 lead. The Pioneers were unable to get a hit off closer Mike Kreiger, who worked a scoreless ninth for the save.

The Pioneers look to keep their playoff hopes alive as they take on the Blackbirds in a doubleheader tomorrow.