April 25, 2009
W. LONG BRANCH, NJ - Junior Jared Balbach earned his sixth win of the season on the mound in the nightcapm backed up by three hits and three RBI from Jeff Heppner, as the Pioneer baseball team clipped Monmouth 10-3 in a Northeast Conference tilt. Monmouth took the opener 10-4.
Heppner drove home a run in the first and another in the third with a double as SHU opened up a 3-0 lead in the second game. The Pioneers opened up a 7-0 gap with a four-run fourth. Senior Phil Tantillo, who had four hits in the game, drove home the first with a bunt single and Tyler Santos the second with an RBI fielder's choice. Heppner picked up his third RBI of the game next to make it 6-0, and freshman Mike Olszyk finished the rally with a single to right.
Balbach allowed just four hits in the game, running his record to 6-2. He struck out six and walked just one.
In the opener, Monmouth used a six-run second inning off SHU starter Matt Fitton to erase a 3-1 deficit and take command of the game.
The Pioneers, 17-21-1 overall and 8-6 in the NEC, got back within a pair at 6-4 on back-to-back doubles from Santos and Heppner in the fifth.
Ryan Lynch, who had come on for Fitton in the third inning, kept the Hawks off the scoreboard for three innings but Monmouth came up with four in the bottom of the sixth to put the game away.
The two teams will complete the four-game series tomorrow at 1 PM.