May 2, 2014
NORFOLK, Va. - Five starting underclassmen combined for nine runs on nine hits and five RBI as the Florida Atlantic University baseball team downed Old Dominion 9-4 on Friday.
Freshman Stephen Kerr led the Owls (23-22, 11-14 C-USA), going 3-for-5 on the night with a run and an RBI. Sophomore Brendon Sanger scored three times while CJ Chatham drove in three, including a solo home run.
The Owls got to Old Dominion (27-19, 13-12 C-USA) starting pitcher Andy Roberts early, posting four runs on five hits in the first inning. After singles by Kerr and Sanger, Chatham and senior Levi Meyer hit back-to-back doubles, followed by an RBI single by Esteban Puerta for FAU's four runs.
Freshman Jose Bonilla Traverso led off the second with a bunt single and advanced to third after a sacrifice bunt by Kerr and an ODU error. Ricky Santiago then hit a sacrifice fly to plate Bonilla Traverso, giving the Owls a 5-0 lead. Sanger and senior Tyler Rocklein hit back-to-back doubles to increase the lead to six in the second frame.
The Owls tacked on another run in the third when Puerta reached on an error and scored on an infield single by Kerr.
Old Dominion had the bases loaded in each the second and third innings, but FAU's Jeremy Strawn was able to get out of the jams. The Monarchs got on the board in the fifth when two walks and a hit batter loaded the bases for the third time. Connor Myers hit an 0-2 pitch down the right field line to drive in ODU's first two runs, making it a 7-2 game.
FAU added an insurance run in the sixth as Kerr and Rocklein singled and Sanger walked to load the bags. Sanger came across to score on a wild pitch before ODU got out of the inning.
ODU would add runs in each the seventh and eighth innings, but CJ Chatham's solo home run in the eighth put the game out of hand at 9-4.
Strawn earned the win, dealing five innings with three strikeouts and two runs allowed. Roberts suffered the loss, allowing six earned runs on seven hits in 1.2 innings without a strikeout.
Game two of the series is slated for a 3 p.m. start on Saturday. Free audio is available at FAUSports.com with Brandon Goodwin calling the play-by-play.