March 10, 2012
WASHINGTON - The Georgetown University baseball scored three times in a pair of innings en route to a 9-3 win over Yale on Friday and backed that up with a solid pitching performance from sophomore Alex Baker (Charlotte, N.C./Ardrey Kell) in a 6-1 win over Iowa on Saturday afternoon as the Hoyas continued play in the Russ Matt Challenge at Lake Myrtle Main Park Field in Auburndale, Fla.
The wins improved Georgetown's record to 10-5 overall this season.
On Saturday, Baker threw four innings against the Hawkeyes in his first start of the year and allowed only a leadoff single in the second with a walk and a strikeout, despite taking a no-decision.
Junior third baseman Trevor Matern (Santa Clarita, Calif./Hart) went 3-for-4 with two RBI and sophomore designated hitter Christian Venditti (Newtonville, Mass./St. Sebastian's Country Day) drove in a pair of runs.
The Hoyas took the lead in the first and never trailed. Senior right fielder Rand Ravnaas (Fort Worth, Texas/All Saints' Episcopal) hit a one-out double to left, driving in junior centerfielder Justin Leeson (Exton, Pa./West Chester), who had reached on a leadoff single.
The lead grew to 3-0 in the top of the sixth with a pair of unearned runs. Senior catcher Kevin Johnson (Peabody, Mass./Belmont Hill), and runners were on second and third after junior Danny Poplawski (Bellevue, Wash./The Overlake School) reached on a sacrifice and the runners moved on a throwing error. Venditti drove in a run with a ground out and, with one out, Matern delivered the second run with an infield out.
Leading 3-1 in the eighth, Georgetown added two more runs when Matern hit an RBI single and eventually scored on a wild pitch. In the ninth, Venditti's RBI single plated Johnson to close out the scoring.
Sophomore Jack VanderLinden (Dallas, Texas/Episcopal School of Dallas) threw 2.0 innings and picked up his second win of the season, while freshman Matt Hollenbeck (Horsham, Pa./Hatboro-Horsham) threw 1.1 innings of scoreless relief and senior Pablo Vinent (Miami, Fla./Belen Jesuit) closed out the game with 1.2 scoreless innings.
In Friday's 9-3 win over Yale, junior left fielder Paul Bello (Towaca, N.J./Delbarton) drove in three runs, while Ravnaas and Poplawksi each had two RBI as the Hoyas scored three times in the first and three more times in the fourth.
Junior right-hander Neal Dennison (Houston, Texas/Lamar) started and threw 6.0 innings, his longest collegiate outing for the reliever-turned-starter. He gave up three runs and scattered 10 hits over those six innings, with two walks and four strikeouts. Junior James Heine (Chapel Hill, N.C./East Chapel Hill) threw three innings of scoreless relief, striking out two and gave up three hits, for his first save of the season.
Georgetown jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first when three walks loaded the bases and a walk to Poplawski brought in the first run. A two-out single from Bello brought in two more runs.
In the fourth, Leeson and redshirt junior shortstop Mike Garza (San Antonio, Texas/Douglas MacArthur) singled and were on second and third when a sacrifice fly from Ravnaas drove in a run to make it 4-2. After a walk to Johnson put runners on the corners, Poplawski's single drove in Garza and made it 5-2.
Leading 6-3 in the seventh, Johnson and Poplawski each hit singles, with an error on the latter bringing home the first run. A sacrifice fly from Bello pushed the lead to 8-3. Ravnaas hit an RBI single in the eighth, driving in Leeson, who drew a leadoff walk and stole second.
Georgetown closes out its trip to Florida on Sunday at 10 a.m. against Bucknell.