May 11, 2013
PITTSBURGH – The University of Pittsburgh baseball team (39-11, 17-3 Big East) defeated Villanova (11-38, 2-18 Big East), 12-4, this afternoon in the second game of a double header at Charles L. Cost Field at the Petersen Sports Complex. With the victory, the Panthers have now tied a school record for wins in a season with 39.
“Those were two grind it out games,” said head coach Joe Jordano. “I give Villanova a tremendous amount of credit. They hung tough in the first game and scored two in the top of the ninth and we had to win it in walk-off fashion. I was impressed with both of their starters. I thought they did a very solid job in making it two competitive games. We came up with some big hits and played well defensively and it put us in a position to win two ballgames.”
Matt Wotherspoon (JR/Mountain Top, Pa.) (9-2) picked up his ninth win of the season for the Panthers, pitching six strong innings and striking out a season-high nine batters. Pat Young (1-8) gave up eight earned runs on nine hits in four innings of work and took the loss for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats scored first with a run in the top of the first before Pitt quickly responded in the home half of the inning when Boo Vazquez (SO/Youngstown, Ohio) singled home Elvin Soto (SO/New York, N.Y.) with a two-out rope up the middle.
The Panthers then took the lead in the bottom of the second. Evan Oswald (SR/Butler, Pa.) led off the inning with a double down the right field line and was moved to third on a beautiful bunt by Dylan Wolsonovich (FR/Ford City, Pa.). From there, Oswald was able to alertly score on a passed ball to give Pitt a 2-1 lead.
A two out rally in the bottom of the fourth added a pair of runs to the Panther lead. Stephen Vranka
(JR/Monroeville, Pa.) started the rally with a single up the middle. Soto and Casey Roche
(JR/Downingtown, Pa.) then drew walks to load the bases. Vazquez came to the dish and delivered another key two-out hit, a single through the right side, for a pair of RBIs.
Pitt broke the game open in the bottom of the fifth when it put up a seven-spot. Steven Shelinsky Jr. (JR/Yardley, Pa.) led off the inning with a walk. John Peluso (SR/Bethlehem, Pa.) followed up with a single into right. After Oswald got hit by a pitch to load the bases, Wolsonovich delivered a bases-clearing triple to the gap in right center for a trio of RBIs. Vranka brought home Wolsonovich with a shot up the middle. Soto then stepped to the plate and belted his sixth homerun of the season over the wall in right pushing the lead to 10-1. Sam Parente (SR/Pittston, Pa.) wrapped up the scoring for the Panthers in the frame when he singled to center field scoring pinch runner Ron Sucre (SR/Miami, Fla.) and giving Pitt an 11-1 lead going into the sixth.
Villanova scored three in the top of the seventh before Pitt answered with a run in the home half to make the score 12-4.
Jeff Kelly (SR/Pottstown, Pa.) entered the game in the seventh in relief of Alex Caravella (SR/Harrington Park, N.J.) and delivered 2.2 innings of shutout baseball.
Pitt and Villanova will wrap up their series tomorrow, Sunday, May 11, with a noon contest which will air live on Pitt Panthers TV. Rhys Aldenhoven (JR/Victoria, Australia) (7-0) gets the ball for the Panthers, while Josh Harris (4-6) will start for the Wildcats.