March 21, 2014
BETHESDA, Md. – The Georgetown baseball team backed a strong pitching performance from Matt Smith (Cranberry Twp, Pa./Seneca Valley) with a well-balanced offensive attack and solid defense to win its third straight game, 6-2, over Towson on Friday afternoon. It was the Hoyas first game at Shirley Povich Field this spring.
Smith pitched a career-high 7.2 innings, giving up just one run on four hits while striking out one. Ryan Busch (Falcon Heights, Minn./Roseville Area) got on base in all four plate appearances, including two hits, and scored a pair of runs and Steve Anderson (Albany, N.Y./Northfield Mt. Hermon Prep (Mass.)/Guilderland) had two RBI. Tim Davis (Vienna, Va./James Madison) recorded his third save of the season.
Smith was dealing from the start. After a walk in the first inning, he did not face more than three batters in an inning until the sixth inning. He gave up singles in both the fourth and fifth innings, but the runners were eliminated by double plays.
Smith was helped out by some superb defense behind him. Along with the double plays, of which the Hoyas turned three on the day, Evan Ryan (Omaha, Neb./Creighton Prep) made an outstanding catch in right field, laying out fully to make a diving catch and take away an extra base hit away in the second inning.
The Hoyas got on the board first in the bottom of the fourth. Busch led off with a sharp single to left for Georgetown’s first hit of the day. He stole second and moved to third on a productive ground out to second base by Eric Webber (Stockton, Calif./Saint Mary's). Nick Collins (Carthage, N.C./Union Pines) followed with a sacrifice fly to center to plate Busch and give the Hoyas a 1-0 lead.
Georgetown added a pair runs in the seventh inning. Collins led off with a walk and moved to second on a wild pitch. With two outs, Patrick Camporini (Safety Harbor, Fla./Clearwater Central Catholic) reached an infield single, advancing Collins to third. With Jake Kuzbel (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge) up, Camporini took off for second and got caught in a run down. While the Towson defense was preoccupied, Collins ran home, beating a late throw. On the next pitch, Kuzbel singled to center to score Camporini.
Towson finally got a run off of Smith in the eighth to cut the Hoyas lead to 3-1. Matt Hollenbeck (Horsham, Pa./Hatboro-Horsham) came on to pitch with two outs and runners on second and third and retired the first man he faced on a fly out to get out of any further trouble.
The Hoyas added another three runs in the eighth to put the game out of hand. Beau Hall (Seaville, N.J./Ocean City) walked, Busch was hit by a pitch and Webber singled to load the bases with no outs. After Collins struck out, Anderson delivered a two-run doubled down the right field line to plate both Hall and Busch. Camporini followed with a sacrifice fly to left to allow Webber to cross the plate.
The Tigers loaded the bases with no outs in the ninth on three consecutive walks by Hollenbeck. Davis came on and immediately induced a 5-4-3 double play, allowing a run to score, before ending the game with a strikeout.
The Hoyas and Tigers resume their three-game series on Saturday with a 1 p.m. start at Shirley Povich Field. David Ellingson (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands College Park) will take the mound for Georgetown. The series finale will be played Sunday at Towson.
Notes – Busch, after missing the past four games due to injury, extended his hitting streak to 12 games with his single in the fourth inning.