March 23, 2013
Queens, N.Y. - The University of Pittsburgh baseball team (14-6, 2-0 Big East) used 11 hits and a complete game from Matt Wotherspoon (JR/Mountain Top, Pa.) to cruise to a 14-2 victory over St. John's (7-13, 0-2 Big East) this afternoon at Jack Kaiser Stadium.
Wotherspoon (4-1) registered the win after pitching 9.0 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with six strikeouts. Sean Hagan (1-4) took the loss for the Red Storm.
The Panthers got on the board first in the top of the third inning. Stephen Vranka (JR/Monroeville, Pa.) got Pitt's first hit of the game when he blasted a double into left center field with one out. After a Dylan Wolsonovich (FR/Ford City, Pa.) fielder's choice moved Vranka to third, Evan Oswald (SR/Butler, Pa.) came up with a clutch two-out single through the left side to bring in Pitt's first run of the day.
Pitt busted the game open in the top half of the fourth inning when it scored six runs. Casey Roche (JR/Downingtown, Pa.) led off the inning with a single up the middle and moved to second on a failed pickoff attempt and was brought home by Elvin Soto (SO/New York, N.Y.) on a single to center. With a runner in and two outs, Pitt rallied for five more runs. Vranka and Wolsonovich started the rally with walks. A pair of errors allowed three more runs to score before Roche came up for the second time in the inning and roped a single up the middle to put Pitt up 7-0.
St. John's added two runs in the bottom of the fourth but it was all the runs that the Red Storm would get on the day as Wotherspoon shut down the Johnnies bats the rest of the way.
The Panthers scored again in the top of the sixth and added another six spot in the top of the seventh to push the lead to 14-2. In the sixth, Steven Shelinsky Jr. (JR/Yardley, Pa.) drove home Wolsonovich with a single into centerfield for the Panthers' score. In the seventh, Pitt took advantage of wild pitching from the Johnnies and used RBIs from Roche, Vazquez and Soto for its second six run inning of the day.
From there, Wotherspoon cruised retiring nine of the last 11 he faced to secure his second career complete game.
Pitt and St. John's will close their series tomorrow, Sunday, Mach 24, with a noon game. The contest, which will be broadcast live on ESPN3, will see Rhys Aldenhoven (Victoria, Australia) toe the rubber for Pitt against St. John's Ryan McCormick.