March 17, 2012
PITTSBURGH – Sophomore right-handed pitcher Ethan Mildren tallied his second win of the year, leading the University of Pittsburgh baseball team to an 8-3 victory over Hartford in the second game of a three-day series at Charles L. Cost Field at the Petersen Sports Complex.
Mildren (2-0) tossed seven and two thirds innings, surrendering three earned runs off eight hits. Junior left hander Alex Caravella came in to pitch 1.1 innings in relief.
“Again, we faced another good arm today,” Pitt head coach Joe Jordano said. “The lefty yesterday did a great job, and so did Hunter Englehart today. Our starter has done a good job. Ethan Mildren threw a great game. Offensively, Casey hit his first career home run. I like what we’re doing right now and we will look to continue to do so tomorrow.”
Trailing 2-0, Pitt rallied in the bottom of the third to even the game at 2-2. Junior Sam Parente scored the first run on a passed ball during senior Anthony Defabio’s at-bat. A few pitches later, Defabio hit a RBI single to left field, allowing sophomore Derik Wilson to score. Wilson singled earlier in the frame.
The Panthers started to pull away with a RBI single from Parente in the fourth inning that sent freshman Nick Vazquez home. Pitt held a 3-2 advantage after four complete innings.
In the sixth stanza, sophomore Casey Roche sailed a two-RBI homer through left center to extend the Panthers lead to 5-2. That bomb was the first of his career and the eight of the year for Pitt.
Later in the bottom of the eighth, the Panthers added insurance runs off RBI singles from both Defabio and senior Rick Devereaux. Devereaux smacked a groundball that skipped into right field and scored two – sophomore Mike Douglas and Wilson – and rounded out the final score at 8-3.
Hartford’s Andy Drexel hit a two-run homer in the third to give Hartford its early lead. The Hawks notched their third run of the game in the eighth inning when James Alfonso hit a solo shot to left center field.
Defensively, the Panthers held Hartford off the scoreboard in the sixth. With zero outs registered, Hartford had runners on first and second. However, catcher Elvin Soto gunned down Drexel, who was attempting to steal third. Next, Pitt recorded its 10th double play of the season to end the rally. Junior Kevin Johnson scooped up a ground ball and tossed it to Wilson at second, who turned and fired it to Devereaux at first base.
The Panthers will end their three-game series on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Charles L. Cost Field. Sophomore right-handed pitcher Matt Wotherspoon is expected to make the start.