March 12, 2002
Shaen O'Connor's first home run of the season was a huge one as he hit a grand slam home run in the third inning to give FAU a 7-4 lead. The four runs gave Florida Atlantic University the lead for good as they defeated Iona College 9-5. With the win, FAU improves to 13-6 and are currently on a six game winning streak, the longest since 2000. The loss drops the Gaels to 6-5.
FAU gave starting pitcher Travis NeSmith a lead to work with after the first inning when they scored two runs on two hits. Both runs were recorded when L.J. Biernbaum and Mike Valdes posted doubles, Biernbaum's seven and Valdes' fourth of the season.
Iona scored once in the second and briefly took the lead in the third after a lead off double by Travis Garcia was followed by two singles and another double. NeSmith only gave up two doubles, both coming in the third. With the three runs, the Gaels took a 4-3 lead.
O'Connor's grand slam came in the fourth to give FAU back the lead for good. Florida Atlantic has not been in a come from behind situation in the past six games as they have outscored their opponents 88-24. "(The players) believed that they could come back," said head coach Kevin Cooney.
FAU scored twice more, posting one run in the seventh and eighth innings. Both runs came off of lead off singles.
L.J. Biernbaum finished the night 4-for-5 with three RBI to help give Travis NeSmith his second pitching victory of the season. NeSmith pitched five innings and struck out seven. His second win comes a week after his first victory when he pitched seven innings of no-hit baseball.
Patrick Dougherty took the loss for Iona after earning his first start of the season.
Florida Atlantic will return to the field on Wednesday to face Monmouth University at 7 pm. The
game will be the second of a seven game home stand.
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