March 2, 2014
BOCA RATON, FL - Florida Atlantic University baseball team needed the full nine innings to down St. John's University and take the three-game series, 5-4. It is the third series in as many weeks the Owls have captured and they move to 8-3 on the young season.
The two teams swapped runs in the first and the game remained scoreless until FAU's bats came alive in the bottom of the fifth. Freshman third baseman CJ Chatham led off the fifth with a walk and moved to second courtesy of a Billy Endris sacrifice bunt. Brendon Sanger then drove Chatham home to give FAU its first lead of the game. The Owls would plate two more in the inning courtesy a wide pitch and then a Ricky Santiago sacrifice fly.
St. John's (2-7) capitalized on two hits, two wild pitches and two FAU errors to tie the game in the top of the eighth and added the potential game-winning run in the top of the ninth after an FAU pick-off miscue.
The Owls opened the bottom of the ninth when Mitch Morales singled to left. Chatham was going to sacrifice Morales to second, but he was hit by a pitch. With runners on first and second Billy Endris loaded the bases with a bunt single.
The Owls then captured the game in an unexpected fashion. With the infield and outfield playing in, Sanger hit a grounder to first that was fielded cleanly and thrown to get the force out at home. St. John's then attempted to double up on Sanger by throwing to first. The throw hit a Red Storm defenseman and by the time they had recovered Chatham scored from second to give the Owls the 5-4 victory.
FAU was held to six hits. Chatham had the lone FAU extra base hit, a team leading double. On the mound the Owls used three pitches. Drew Jackson, Drew his third start of the season and pitched 6.1 innings. Jackson held St. John's to one run on five hits and retired four by strikeout. Brett Maggard tossed the final two outs of the seventh and gave way to Kevin Alexander in the top of the eighth. Alexander picked up the victory after two innings of work. He allowed five hits, three runs, only one was earned. He walked one and struck out one.
FAU will play host to Boston College at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, Mar. 4. For tickets call 1-866-FAU-Owls or visit www.fausports.com.