Penn State Harrisburg 18, No. 2 Christopher Newport 13
1. Torres 2b, 2. Smith cf, 3. Williams lf, 4. Van Houten dh, 5. Winters rf, 6. McSorley ss, 7. Koroneos 1b, 8. Struve 3b, 9. Aug c, De Leon p
1. Clark lf, 2. Woodard 3b, 3. DiNapoli ss, 4. Baham 1b, 5. Mason cf, 6. Hicks rf, 7. Grubbs c, 8. O'Brien dh, 9. Cutchins 2b, Clements p
How It Happened
Penn State Harrisburg celebrated Easter by tallying runs in every half inning and outslugging No. 2 Christopher Newport 18-13 in Capital Athletic Conference (CAC) action in front of its hometown faithful on Sunday afternoon, April 21.
The Lions (24-10-1, 11-7 CAC) handed CNU (27-4, 14-2 CAC) just its fourth loss of the season in large part due to the long ball, of which the Blue & White hit six in Sunday's slugfest. Chase Smith led the charge with a pair of solo home runs and Zachary Koroneos added a grand slam. Miguel Torres, Bret Williams and Ryan McSorley each went yard as well.
McSorley drove in the game's first run when he worked a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the first and Koroneos made it 3-0 with a double to right center field. Smith added to the advantage with his first solo shot of the day in the second and Travis Van Houten's double down the left field line drove in Williams to make it 5-0 heading to the third.
Tyler Aug notched his first RBI of the day with a ground ball to shortstop that plated McSorley in the third but the Captains cut the deficit in half when Nick Baham hit a three-run home run in the top of the fourth.
Christopher Newport's momentum was short lived, however, as Smith and Williams hit back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the fourth before McSorley launched one of his own over the fence to negate the visitors' push.
Torres got into the act by hitting a two-run shot in the fifth and the Lions tacked on two more to push the lead to double digits thanks to RBIs from Struve and Aug in the bottom of the sixth. Koroneos put an exclamation point on the day's proceedings with a grand slam in the seventh that ballooned the home team's lead to 17-3.
The nation's No. 2 team made a surge in the top of the eighth, using five hits and taking advantage of a Penn State Harrisburg error to score seven runs. The Lions added an insurance run in the eighth thanks to a sacrifice fly from Casey Winters that drove in Smith.
The Captains used three more hits to score three runs in the top of the ninth but reliever Brendan Riotto got lead-off man Conner Clark to ground out to Torres at second base to end the rally and the game, finishing the job that starter Michael De Leon began on the mound.
At the Plate
- The teams combined for 11 total home runs and 14 extra-base hits.
- Zachary Koroneos went 3-for-6 with a grand slam, a double and game-best six RBIs.
- Chase Smith finished 3-for-5 with a pair of home runs, two RBIs and four runs scored.
- Ryan McSorley was 3-for-3 with a home run, three runs scored and a pair of RBIs.
On the Mound
- Starter Michael De Leon turned in a strong performance on the bump, allowing three runs, scattering seven hits and striking out five batters.
- CNU's Nathan Clements took the loss, allowing five runs on three hits and four walks in 1.2 innings of work.
- No Christopher Newport pitcher threw more than two innings.
Around the Diamond
- The game was nearly clean in the field, with the Lions committing the contest's lone error.
- Tyler Aug stole the game's only base.
- Casey Winters had four putouts in right field.
- Second baseman Miguel Torres had four putouts and assisted on three more.
The Lions return to non-conference action when they travel to Alvernia on Monday afternoon, April 22.