Junior Ryan Garton retired 16 of the last 17 batters he faced to improve to 2-0 on the season in Friday's win over Monmouth
March 4, 2011
Boca Raton, Fla. - One inning is all the Florida Atlantic University baseball team needed in Friday night's 8-4 victory over Monmouth University at the FAU Baseball Stadium in Boca Raton. The victory was the Owls' fourth straight, eighth on the home field and opened a three-game weekend series.
FAU scored seven of its eight runs in the first inning; six came with two outs; 11 batters went to the plate in the frame; and six came were unearned through three defensive errors by the visiting Hawks.
Senior first baseman Dan Scheffler started the scoring spree with a sacrifice fly to center field, which allowed junior catcher Mike Albaladejo to score, tying the game at 1-1. The Owls grabbed the lead on a base hit up the middle by junior outfielder Alex Hudak that plated senior outfielder Andy Mee.
Then, senior designated hitter Eddie Cassidy and Hudak would make it 4-1 after senior shortstop Nick DelGuidice hit a ground ball to first base that was misplayed for the Hawks' second error in the inning. Senior outfielder Colby Gratton followed with a two-run single to center field that scored DelGuidice and junior infielder Joey Burkhalter, giving the hosts a 6-1 lead. Gratton would follow by stealing third base and scoring on a Monmouth throwing error to cap off the productive start.
FAU would add more damage in the second inning on DelGuidice's two-out RBI single to right-center field that scored Scheffler for an 8-2 advantage.
Monmouth threatened with a comeback by scoring two runs in the eighth inning, but could not close the gap beyond the final 8-4 score.
Junior right hander Ryan Garton picked up the victory and settled into a rhythm during the middle innings, retiring 16 of his last 17 batters. He tossed seven quality innings, with a season-best eight strikeouts, to win his second game of the season (2-0).
The Owls' offense had 11 hits - seven came in the productive first inning - to mark the third consecutive contest with double-digit hits. Eight of the nine players in the batting order recorded at least one hit. Hudak, DelGuidice and Albaladejo all had multiple-hit performances, and senior second baseman Raymond Church extended his hitting to 20 games with an infield single during his second at-bat of the first inning. It is the longest hitting streak since Mike McKenna had a 23-game hit streak in 2007.
Monmouth's Owen Stewart had three of the team's six hits and Jamie Rosenkranz drove in two runs. Starting pitcher Nick Meyers fell to 1-1 on the season, allowing two earned of the eight runs surrendered in three innings. The Hawks fell to 2-2 on the season.
FAU returns to the diamond on Saturday for the middle game of the three-game series. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.
Season and individual tickets of Florida Atlantic baseball are available by calling the FAU Ticket Office at 1-866-FAU-OWLS.
Former Owl Murphy Named Padres' Interim Head Coach
Sixteen Owls Take Part in Summer Leagues
Brendon Sanger Named NCBWA All-American
Billy Endris Drafted by the Kansas City Royals
Drew Jackson Drafted by the San Francisco Giants
Kyle Miller Drafted by the Chicago Cubs
Brendon Sanger Drafted by Los Angeles Angels