RICHMOND, Virginia – Behind a 14 hits and 15 run outburst, the Marist baseball team picked up a 15-6 win over the Virginia Commonwealth University Rams on Thursday.
With the win, Marist now stands at 7-6 on the season. The 15 runs mark the most scored in a single game by the team this season and the 14 hits marks the most in a single game this year as well.
Redshirt freshman Tyler Kapuscinski led the Red Foxes on the day offensively, going 3-for-5 with his first career homerun, three runs scored and four RBI, while junior Matt Iantosca chipped in a 4-for-5 effort with two runs scored and two RBI, senior Tyler Kirkpatrick went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI and junior Andrew Rouse finished 1-4 with a run scored and three RBI. Sophomore Anthony Lazar chipped in a 2-for-5 effort with three runs scored, freshman Matt Rubayo picked up his first career hit and RBI, redshirt senior Matt Pagano finished 1-for-6 and sophomore Frankie Gregoire chipped in one run scored and one RBI on the afternoon.
On the hill, freshman Conor McNamara picked up his second win of the season, throwing three and one third innings while giving up four runs on seven hits with one walk and three strikeouts. Sophomore Brandon Bonomo pitched a perfect two thirds of an inning of no hit no run ball, senior John Parisi threw two innings and gave up no runs on two hits with two strikeouts, Ryan Thomas pitched two innings and gave up two runs on one hit with a walk and one strikeout and junior Spencer Bunting threw one inning and gave up no runs on two hits with one strikeout.
The Rams struck first in the bottom of the second inning when Dylan Isquirdo led off with a walk. Zac Ching followed with an RBI double to left center, scoring Isquirdo and Haiden Lamb singled up the middle, scoring Ching and it was 2-0 VCU.
Marist answered right back in the top of the third when Kirkpatrick led off with a walk and Lazar followed with a single through the left side, advancing Kirkpatrick to third. During the next at bat, Lazar stole second and Kapuscinski walked to load the bases. Gregoire made it back-to-back walks, scoring Kirkpatrick and following a Ram’s pitching change and a strikeout, Rouse singled to center, scoring Lazar and Kapuscinski to give the Red Foxes a 3-2 lead. During the next at bat, Rouse stole second and Gregoire stole home. Two batters later, Randy Taveras reached on a fielding error by the shortstop, scoring Rouse and stole second during the next at bat. Iantosca followed with an RBI single to left field and it was 6-2 Marist.
The Red Foxes added to their lead in the top of the fourth inning when Lazar led off with a single to left. During the next at bat, he advanced to second on a baulk and third on a wild pitch. Kapuscinski then followed with his first career home run, a two run shot and it was 8-2 Marist.
In the bottom of the fourth, VCU answered when Mitchell Lacey led off with a double down the left field line. Isquirdo followed with an RBI single to right center scoring Lacey and Josh Simon pinch ran for Isquirdo. Ching then followed with a single to the pitcher to set up men on first and second. Following a strikeout, Bonomo replaced McNamara and Darian Carpenter was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Daane Berezo followed with a sac fly to left field, scoring Simon and it was 8-4 Red Foxes.
In the top of the fifth, Iantosca singled to third base with one out. Kirkpatrick doubled down the right field line, advancing Kirkpatrick to third and Lazar reached on a fielding error by the third baseman that scored Iantosca. Kapuscinski doubled to left center, scoring Lazar and Kirkpatrick and the score was 11-4 Marist.
For the fourth consecutive inning, the Red Foxes added to their lead in the top of the sixth when the Rams made a pitching change and Taveras walked with two outs. During the next at bat, he stole second and Iantosca singled to center field, scoring Taveras. Iantosca stole second and Kirkpatrick singled to center, scoring Iantosca and it was 13-4 Marist.
The Red Foxes made it five innings in a row that they scored in the top of the seventh. Following a VCU pitching change, Kapuscinski led off with a doubled down the left field line and advanced to third on a sac fly by Gregoire. Greg Kocinski walked and Rouse followed with an RBI sac fly, that scored Kapuscinski to make it 14-4 Marist.
In the bottom of the seventh, Thomas replaced Parisi on the mound and Steven Carpenter walked with one out. Paul Witt followed with a hit by pitch J.P. Vail pinch hit for Lacey and reached on a fielder’s choice with Witt out at second and Carpenter advancing to third. Vail advanced to second on a wild pitch that also scored Carpenter to make it 14-5 Red Foxes.
Marist scored for the sixth consecutive inning in the top of the eighth when following a Ram’s pitching change, Taveras led off with a hit by pitch. Iantosca singled to right to set up men on first and second and freshman Matt Rubayo pinch hit for Kirkpatrick and singled down the left field line, scoring Taveras and it was 15-5 Red Foxes.
In the bottom of the eighth, Dan Carpenter homered, trimming the deficit to 15-6.
However, that was as close as VCU would get, as back-to-back singles in the bottom of the ninth were sandwiched around a ground out, a strike out and a fly out, stranding the runners on base and giving Marist the 15-6 victory.
Up next, the Red Foxes travel to the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, NC for a Saturday doubleheader (12 & 3:30 PM) against the University of Pennsylvania Quakers before the two teams will play the third game on Sunday (2 PM) at the Harford Sports Complex in Bel Air, MD.