Quinnipiac splits doubleheader with Canisius, as Golden Griffins offense explodes for 15 runs in Game 2


Photo: Rob Lyon

Dylan Sommer and Christian Beane

It has been an entire year away from Hamden, Connecticut, but the baseball team is finally back. After playing the first 19 games on the road, the Quinnipiac baseball team returned to their home field on Saturday to face off against the Canisius Golden Griffins for two games.


Game One

The Bobcats took the first game of the weekend series against the Golden Griffins, 5-2. 

Quinnipiac pitcher Brandyn Garcia came out firing on all cylinders in the first couple of innings as he sent four Golden Griffins down on strikes. 

However, Garcia made his first mistake of the game in the third inning. Canisius second baseman Max Grant blasted the ball out of the park to give the Golden Griffins the early lead. The home run went down as Grant’s fifth on the season. 

Even though the Bobcats found themselves down on the scoreboard, they struggled to get their offense going. Canisius pitcher Matt Duffy was wheeling and dealing the Quinnipiac sluggers all game long as he notched nine strikeouts by the end of the fourth inning. 

In the top of the fifth, Canisius brought yet another runner home after an error by catcher Danny Melnick. Nonetheless, the Bobcats found a way to pick up their mistakes at the bottom of the fifth. 

Left fielder Keegan O’Connor got the Bobcats momentum after he sent a line drive base hit into center field. Then, right fielder Andrew McDermott beat out a ground ball for a base hit on the next play. Before the Golden Griffins knew it, bases were loaded with only one out. 

Shortly after, Duffy made a mistake of his own and was called for a balk. This sent O’Connor home and gave the Bobcats their first run of the game. From there on out, the Golden Griffins’ mistakes kept piling up as the inning went along. The Bobcats capitalized on a couple errors and added three more runs before the end of the inning, giving them a 4-2 lead. 

The Bobcats picked up right where they left off in the bottom of the sixth. First baseman Michael Kohn led off the inning with a deep ball to center field, and Canisius outfielder Mike DeStefano could not come up with it. Then, center fielder Jared Zimbardo sent Kohn home on a sacrifice fly to increase their lead to 5-2.

Quinnipiac continued their momentum on the defensive side, closing the door on the Canisius offensive attack for the rest of the game. Reliever Anthony Ambrosino dominated the last three innings with four strikeouts, and he picked up his first save of the year. 

The Bobcats strong fifth inning turned out to be too much for the Golden Griffins, and they walked away with a 5-2 victory in game one of the doubleheader.


Game Two

The Bobcats were unable to climb back from Canisius’ five-run fifth inning, as the Golden Griffins bounced back and beat the Bobcats 15-9 in the second game on Saturday.

Coming off a big win in game one of the doubleheader, Kevin Seitter and the Quinnipiac Bobcats looked to sweep the day against Chris Pouliot and the Canisius Golden Griffins. 

The Golden Griffins came out swinging early and often, tallying two runs in the first and forcing Seitter to throw almost 40 pitches. On the second pitch of the game, center fielder Mike DeStefano pulled a ball over the right-field fence, scoring the first run of the game. After a walk, a fielder’s choice and a single, third baseman Gibson Krzeminski drove in Jake Zurat

Early on, the Bobcats had no answer against the lefty Pouliot, as he allowed no hits through the first three innings. Before the Bobcats had gotten their first hit, Canisius had already scored five runs. 

In the fourth, the Bobcats showed some promise, getting their first hit of the game off the bat of Keegan O’Connor. After O’Connor advanced to second on a wild pitch, third baseman Ian Ostberg drove a double off the center-field wall. With runners on second and third, Sebastian Mueller placed a perfect bunt down the first baseline, scoring O’Connor and after a throwing error by the pitcher Pouliot, Ostberg came in to score. Another bunt single by Gianni Arici drove in Mueller giving the Bobcats their third run. The score was cut to 5-3 Canisius after the fourth.

But Canisius broke the game wide open in the fifth, answering back with five runs of their own. Canisius forced pitcher Carter Poiry out of the game before he could record an out. The first run of the inning came on a bases-loaded walk by Mike Mazzara. The next batter, Carlin Dick, sent a double down the left-field line scoring two. The last two runs of the big inning came in by an RBI groundout and on a passed ball.  

Canisius didn’t stop there. In the sixth inning, they scored another three runs. To start the inning, Krzeminski sent the first pitch he saw over the right-field fence. The Golden Griffins managed to get runners on second and third, and once again DeStefano came up huge for them, hitting a double to right that scored two. He finished the game 3-for-7 with two extra-base hits and four RBIs. 

Over the next few innings, the Bobcats went on to score two more runs. In the sixth, designated hitter Zak Thomas got a ball to fall down the right-field line scoring McGwire Tuffy. To lead off the eighth, pinch hitter Sam LaChance crushed a ball over the left-field fence. 

In the ninth, Canisius scored two more runs coming off an error. The Bobcats also added four runs of their own coming off two bases-loaded walks by LaChance and Braydon Seaburg and a two-RBI single by Michael Kohn

Despite the ninth inning rally, the Bobcats fell short, dropping the second game of the series 15-9.

In a dominant offensive performance by Canisius, the team tallied a total of 15 runs on 22 hits. Every Golden Griffin starter got a hit in game two of the doubleheader with six players getting multiple hits.

The winning pitcher for the game was Pouliot who pitched five innings, striking out eight and allowing three runs, two of which were earned. The losing pitcher was Seitter, who pitched four innings, striking out four and allowing five runs, all of which were earned. 

With the two teams splitting the doubleheader, the Bobcats will look to bounce back and win the rubber match against Canisius on Sunday.