New Haven, Conn. –Junior Matt Warren (Wolcott, Conn.) and freshman Eduardo Pena (Hamden, Conn.) helped lead the Albertus Magnus College baseball team as the duo recorded a grand slam each in the Falcons' doubleheader sweep over Norwich University on Tuesday afternoon at Rochford Field in Great Northeast Athletic Conference play.
FINAL (G1): Albertus Magnus 17 | Norwich 2
FINAL (G2): Albertus Magnus 19 | Norwich 12
RECORDS: Albertus Magnus (9-9, 3-3) | Norwich (4-12, 2-4)
KEY HIGHLIGHTS (Game 1)
Albertus jumped out to an early 4-0 lead as the Falcons scored four runs in the bottom of the first behind RBI's from Elijah Spataj (Cheshire, Conn.), Ron Losacano (Old Lyme, Conn.) and Nhasean Murphy (Manchester, Conn.).
Norwich answered back a half inning later cutting the deficit to three, 4-1, following a home run from Connor McGee, but Albertus remained hot at the plate scoring another two runs to extend its lead to 6-1 entering the top of the third.
The Cadets continued to chip away at the Falcons' lead and found themselves trailing by four, 6-2, until the bottom of the third as Albertus broke the game open with a five-run inning that was highlighted by a grand slam from Warren, which was his third home run of the season.
Over the next three innings of play, Albertus tacked on a run in the fourth, three runs in the fifth and two runs in the sixth to pump its lead to 17-2.
KEY STATS (Game 1)
- Sophomore Jay Palais (Farmington, Conn.) picked up his third win of the season after allowing only two runs on six hits while striking out two over five innings of work.
- Warren finished the game with two hits, a season-high five RBI and three runs scored.
- Sophomore Brendan Clark (North Haven, Conn.) went 2-for-2 at the plate and added two RBI's and three runs scored to his stat line.
- Freshman Michael Pepe (Cheshire, Conn.) threw two scoreless innings of relief for the Falcons. He also allowed no hits during his time on the mound.
- Albertus set a new season-high in RBI with 16.
KEY HIGHLIGHTS (Game 2)
Norwich opened the nightcap with the early 1-0 advantage before the Cadets found themselves trailing by two, 3-1, after Albertus scored three runs in the bottom of the first.
Norwich erased the two-run deficit and evened the score at 3-3 following a two-run homer from Cameron Chamberlain. However, Albertus took the lead right back, 5-3, with two runs in the home half of the frame after back-to-back RBI's from Warren and Spataj.
Up 5-4 entering the bottom of the third, Albertus extended its lead to 10-4 as the Falcons scored five runs on one-hit. The inning was highlighted by a three-run RBI triple from Warren despite two outs on the scoreboard.
Norwich threatened the Falcons with a two-run inning in the top of fifth, bringing the score to 10-6, but Warren struck again for the Falcons a half inning later, recording his fifth RBI of the game off double to right to extend the hosts' lead to five, 11-6.
The Cadets continued to rally on offense scoring another two runs in the top of the sixth to cut the Falcons' lead to three, 11-8.
Albertus shined in the bottom of the sixth as the hosts scored eight-runs, including Pena's grand slam, to take a commanding 19-8 lead.
The Cadets slowly began building momentum in the top of the seventh, but managed to score only four runs off a grand slam from Chamberlain.
KEY STATS (Game 2)
- Senior Tyriq Harris (Waterbury, Conn.) posted a team-high four hits over five at bats to go along with two runs scored and a RBI.
- Pena finished game two with a season-high four RBI while Spataj and Losacano posted a pair each.
- Sophomore Brandon Fowler (Lexington, S.C.) earned the "W" on the mound and recorded a season-best five strikeouts.
- Albertus recorded new season-high's in runs (19) and hits (15).
- Along with his grand slam in game one, Warren finished the afternoon with a total of 10 RBI, five in game one and five in game two.
- Pena's grand slam in game two was his first collegiate hit and home run as a Falcon.
- The last time Albertus swept Norwich was back on April 2, 2015. The Falcons defeated the Cadets by the scores of 2-1 and 3-0.
- Following his five-hit performance, Harris is now three hits shy of recording his 100th career hit.
- Browne finished the doubleheader sweep with three hits and is 10 hits away from his 100th career hit.
Albertus resumes non-conference play with a single game against Pine Manor College on Wednesday, April 3rd at Rochford Field. Game time is set for 4:00PM.