Staten Island, NY | After surrendering two runs in the first and being shut out for the first five innings of game one against John Jay College, the College of Staten Island erupted for eleven in the sixth on their way to an 11-2 victory in the early matchup against the Bloodhounds. In game two, which followed a much different script, the Dolphins took a 1-0 first inning lead and were able to make it stand the rest of the way behind a complete game shutout effort from Salvatore Trancucci IV, CSI’s first shutout of 2019. The pair of victories improved CSI to 15-20 overall, 7-4 in the CUNYAC, but more importantly, moved CSI to within one win of securing a berth in the CUNYAC Championship next weekend. The Bloodhounds fell to 12-26 and 3-8 in the CUNYAC as they tried to play spoiler with one more opportunity coming against the Dolphins tomorrow.
GAME ONE: STATEN ISLAND 11, JOHN JAY 2
The Bloodhounds opened game one by setting the Dolphins down 1-2-3 in the top of the first before plating a pair against John Esposito in the bottom half on an RBI single from Sean Napier and a groundout by Danny Wynne. Jared Hershfield shut the Dolphins out through the first five, but CSI finally broke through in a big way in the sixth with eleven runs on nine base hits helped along by a pair of John Jay errors. Esposito and Kevin Ryan combined to hold the Bloodhounds scoreless for the final six innings after the two runs scored by John Jay in the opening frame and CSI took the game by a final of 11-2.
After the Dolphins went down 1-2-3 in the first, Esposito took the mound for CSI looking to lead his team one step closer to a berth in the CUNY Championship against Baruch. Things got off to a shaky start as Zach Hyde singled and stole second before Steven Catuogno walked to put two on with nobody out. Sean Napier then singled home Hyde from second with the game’s first run before a groundout by Danny Wynne brought Catuogno home from third. Esposito then struck out the next two batters he faced sending the game into the second inning, 2-0.
The score remained 2-0 all the way through the start of the sixth inning which is when the Dolphins bats came alive in a big way. With Hershfield beginning his third pass through the Dolphins lineup, Jett Nouvertne drove a one-out double into the right-center field gap to get the rally started. Domenick Castiglione then reached on the first of two Bloodhounds errors and Sean Becker walked to load the bases. Two runs then came home to score on consecutive wild pitches by Hershfield and Becker was chased home from third on a Nicholas Meola single spelling the end for Hershfield on the mound.
Nick Jack came one in relief of Hershfield and was greeted by back-to-back singles off the bats of Anthony DiMarco and Steven Collica. Michael Ciancio then reached on the second Bloodhounds error of the inning reloading the bases for Nick Falcone who singled home the sixth Dolphins run. A fielder’s choice, another wild pitch, and three consecutive doubles by Castiglione, Andrew Nathan, and Becker plated the next five Dolphins runs to make it 11-2.
The 11-2 score would stand the rest of the way as John Esposito improved to 4-3 with 5.2 innings of work on the mound before Kevin Ryan closed things out with 1.1 innings of scoreless relief. After a great start, the wheels came off for Jared Hershfield in the sixth and he suffered the loss, his fourth. Nathan was 3-for-4 for CSI in the game with an RBI while Meola and Nouvertne each added two base hits and an RBI of their own. For John Jay Philip Bellomo had two hits with Napier and Wynne each driving in a run.
GAME TWO: STATEN ISLAND 1, JOHN JAY 0
The Dolphins struck early in the first inning of game two taking the lead on an Andrew Nathan RBI-single to go ahead 1-0. This first inning run would account for all of the CSI scoring in the game, but fortunately, it was enough for Trancucci on the mound. Tranccuci surrendered only three hits on his way to a complete-game shutout, the Dolphins first shutout of the season, a 1-0 victory.
After a leadoff single from Falcone to open the action, he was quickly moved up two bases by a Nouvertne groundout and Castiglione fly ball leaving it to Nathan, the Dolphins cleanup hitter, to chase home the game’s first run. He did not disappoint as he lined a base hit right back up the middle to score Falcone and make it 1-0.
The Bloodhounds went down in order in the first and came to bat in the second still trailing by a run. After a strikeout of Wynne, a one-out infield single back to Trancuccui and another base hit through the middle put two on with one out for John Jay. However, Tranccuci locked in on the mound and picked up back-to-back punchouts of Jake Walton and Jurrel Diaz striking out the side and ending the Bloodhounds scoring threat.
CSI would strand runners in scoring position in both the fourth and fifth innings while John Jay managed only a single base hit from the third through the fifth, the score remaining 1-0. In the sixth, the Bloodhounds put together their best opportunity to score since the opening frame as Hyde singled to lead things off and stole second with one away. This gave Napier and Wynne each an opportunity to drive home the tying run and even things up against Trancucci, but both flew out to end the inning.
John Jay also had an opportunity to get even in the seventh as a Dolphins error put the tying run on base before a fielder’s choice moved that runner into scoring position. Jurrel Diaz was then hit by a pitch putting the winning run on base with the tying run still standing at second, but this was as close as the Bloodhounds would come to scoring. Tranccuci picked up the strikeout of pinch hitter Angel Curbelo to end the game as an energized Dolphins squad took the field to celebrate a huge 1-0 victory that moves them to within one win of clinching a CUNYAC Championship berth.
Trancucci improved to a perfect 3-0 with the complete game shutout in which he only allowed three hits and struck out seven. Unfortunately for John Jay, this was just enough to beat Napier who allowed a run on six hits and also went the distance on the mound for the Bloodhounds. Nathan registered the biggest hit of the game for the Dolphins as his first inning RBI-single ultimately proved to be the game winner. Hyde, Bellomo, and Walton accounted for the three Bloodhounds hits in a game which saw both teams combine for only nine hits after collecting twenty in the early game.
The Dolphins and Bloodhounds are back in action tomorrow as the CUNYAC regular season comes to a close with a slate of 6:00 pm starts. CSI takes on John Jay in a single nine-inning game from the CSI Baseball Complex while Lehman plays CCNY in a doubleheader with game one beginning at 3:00 pm and game two to follow at 6:00 pm. A Dolphins victory clinches a CSI berth in the CUNYAC Championship while CCNY needs two wins and a Dolphins loss to keep their season alive.