March 18, 2012
PITTSBURGH—The University of Pittsburgh baseball team completed a series sweep against Hartford (1-14) with a 10-6 win on Sunday afternoon at Charles L. Cost Field at the Petersen Sports Complex.
Senior first baseman Rick Devereaux dominated the offensive score sheet for the Panthers (10-7), going 4-for-5 on the day with a home run and four RBI. Devereaux is batting .427 with four home runs and a team-leading 26 RBI this season.
“Rick is our three-hitter,” said head coach Joe Jordano. “He’s the guy we want out there late in the game with runners in scoring position. Rick does a great job and was patient today. He let the ball come to him and in turn hit it hard.”
Senior Anthony Defabio notched the go-ahead run with a RBI single to left field in the sixth inning that scored shortstop Evan Oswald. Oswald led off the at-bat with a base hit up the middle. Pitt added insurance runs when Devereaux doubled down the left field line to score Defabio and freshman outfielder Boo Vazquez drove in Devereaux on a single to left field.
In the seventh, Oswald scored his third run of the game off a Steven Shelinsky, Jr. double to left field.
Redshirt freshman Joe Harvey (1-0, 3.86 ERA) earned his first career win on the mound after entering the game in the sixth. Harvey pitched four perfect innings of relief, recording six strikeouts.
“It was great to see Joe pitch the way he did,” Jordano said. “He helps solidify things for us in the bullpen. I was very pleased with his performance today.”
Trailing 3-0 in the third, the Panthers responded with five runs off three hits and a fielding error - all manufactured during a two-out rally. With a full count and center fielder John Peluso standing on second, Devereaux sent a towering fly ball along the right field line for a two-run homer that cut the deficit to one, 3-2. With the bases loaded, freshman catcher Elvin Soto then drove a three-RBI double to deep center field to put the Pitt ahead 5-3.
In the fourth inning, Devereaux singled to right field to score Oswald, who led off with a double to the left side.
The Hawks registered the first three runs of the game off two hits combined in the second and third innings. Later, Simon Kudernatsch scored a run off an infield groundball. Kudernatsch tripled and hit a home run in the contest.
Hartford tied the game at 6-6 in the fifth with two runs off two hits, including a triple by Brendan Behm.
“We just have to keep building,” Jordano stated. “We have different players in the mix that we feel good about. We are going to work hard this week to prepare ourselves for more baseball.”
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Matt Wotherspoon started on the mound for the Panthers. He allowed six runs in five innings of work.
The Panthers travel to Penn State on Wednesday, March 21 in State College, Pa. The game is scheduled to begin at 3:35 p.m.
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