April 18, 2014
BETHESDA, Md. – Nick Collins (Carthage, N.C./Union Pines) delivered a walk-off RBI single, scoring Eric Webber (Stockton, Calif./St. Mary’s) from third base, with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning to lead the Georgetown baseball team to a 4-3 victory over Seton Hall in a BIG EAST contest at Shirley Povich Field on Friday afternoon. The win snapped an eight-game losing streak for the Hoyas.
Tied 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth, Webber led off the inning with a walk. Jake Kuzbel (Ashburn, Va./Stone Ridge) laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt, but the pitcher’s throw was errant, putting runners at first and second with nobody out. Ryan Busch (Falcon Heights, Minn./Roseville Area) flied out to right field, advancing Webber to third. After Kuzbel took second base on a defensive indifference, Seton Hall intentionally walked Beau Hall (Seaville, N.J./Ocean City) to load the bases and brought on a left-handed reliever to face Collins, a left-handed batter. Collins fell behind 1-2 before hitting a line drive over the head of the second baseman, pushing Webber across the plate and giving Georgetown (13-21, 1-7 BIG EAST) the win.
Collins finished with three hits on the day, going 3-for-5. Busch had two hits and scored a pair of runs. Steve Anderson (Albany, N.Y./Northfield Mt. Hermon Prep (Mass.)/Guilderland) had a hit and drove in two runs. Hall was on base three times with a single and two walks. David Ellingson (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands College Park) was originally scheduled to pitch on Sunday but was moved up to Saturday when Will Brown (Chesterfield, Va./Matoaca) was a late scratch. After a tough first inning, Ellingson settled down to pitch six innings while giving up three runs, just one earned, and one hit. He walked five and struck out two while throwing 103 pitches. Felix van der Vaart (Annandale, Va./Flint Hill School) threw 1.1 innings of scoreless relief and Matt Hollenbeck (Horsham, Pa./Hatboro-Horsham) picked up the win by going the final 1.2 innings without giving up a hit.
Seton Hall (26-8, 2-3 BIG EAST) scored all three of its runs in the top of the first inning, without the benefit of a hit. Three walks, a hit batter, a throwing error and a passed ball led to three Pirates crossing the plate, with only one of the runs being earned.
The Hoyas got two runs back in the bottom of the first. Busch singled and Hall walked to lead things off. After Collins grounded into a fielder’s choice, forcing Hall out at second, Anderson singled to left, scoring Busch. With two outs, Patrick Camporini (Safety Harbor, Fla./Clearwater Central Catholic) was hit by a pitch to load the bases and Christian Venditti (Newtonville, Mass./St. Sebastian's School), on the eighth pitch of the at-bat, singled on a hard grounder to the third baseman to allow Collins to score and cut the deficit to 3-2.
Georgetown pushed across a third run in the fifth to knot the game up at 3-3. A double by Busch and singles by Hall and Collins loaded the bases with nobody out. Anderson got his second RBI of the game when he lofted a sacrifice fly to left field to score Busch.
Van der Vaart and Hollenbeck each got out of two-on, two-out jams in the seventh and eighth innings to keep the score tied, setting up Collins’ heroics in the ninth.
The Blue & Gray put together a solid defensive effort. Webber was a perfect 3-for-3 in throwing out potential base-stealers, doing so in the first two innings. Busch made a nice play to end the top of the fifth, sliding into the hole between shortstop and third base to field a ground ball before throwing to second for a close force out. Hall made a nice running catch in center field in the sixth inning, crashing into the fence as he caught a deep line drive.
The two teams wrap up their three-game series with the rubber match on Saturday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.
Notes – The Hoyas now have three walk-off wins this season, with the other two coming against Hartford back in February. Collins has all three of the walk-off hits … With his three hits on Friday, Collins now has multi-hit performances in each of the past four games and in six of the last seven, raising his season average 23 points to a team-high .353 ... Camporini’s hit-by-pitch in the first inning was the seventh time he has been plunked this season, tying him with Webber for the team lead. It also extended his on-base streak to 18 consecutive games … Venditti added a double to finish 2-for-3 on Saturday. He had been just 2-for-22 since the Hoyas returned from their trip to Florida on March 16 … The scheduled start time for Georgetown’s doubleheader versus UMES on Tuesday, April 22 has been moved from 4 p.m. to 2 p.m. The doubleheader will now feature two seven-inning games.