March 1, 2014
BOCA RATON, Fla. - A Robert Wayman two-out RBI double, one of three two-out RBI base hits for the Red Storm on the day, proved to be the difference as St. John's leveled its weekend series against Florida Atlantic with a 4-3 victory. Wayman went 2-for-5 with an RBI double and a run scored, while Jarred Mederos finished 2-for-4 with an RBI double to lead St. John's (2-6). Starter Ryan McCormick (1-1) allowed three runs, two earned, in 5.2 innings of work for the win. Ricky Santiago went 2-for-5 with a solo home run to pace Florida Atlantic (7-3). Starter Jeremy Strawn (1-2) allowed four runs, two earned, in 4.0 innings of work in a losing effort.
St. John's sent seven men to the plate and took a 1-0 lead with a two-out RBI in the second inning. Zach Lauricella was plunked to lead off the frame before Troy Dixon lined an opposite field single into left field. Lauricella tagged and moved to third on a Tyler Sanchez flyout before Robbie Knightes lined a two-out RBI single into right center to give the Red Storm a 1-0 lead. Alex Caruso then walked to load the bases, but Strawn got out of the jam with a fielder's choice.
Florida Atlantic used the long ball to get the run right back as Santiago tied the game at 1-1 with a leadoff home run to left center.
The Red Storm answered and retook the lead with another two-out RBI in the third. After leading off the inning with a single, Wayman was set in motion and advanced to second base on a groundout. Mederos then stepped to dish with two outs and laced an RBI double to the wall in right center to give St. John's a 2-1 lead.
The teams continued to trade runs as the Owls tied the game again with a two-out run in the bottom of the third. McCormick retired the first two batters before Stephen Kerr kept the inning alive with a two-out single into right field. Brendon Sanger followed with an RBI double to the wall in right field as FAU tied the game at 2-2.
St. John's had the leadoff man reach base for the third-straight inning and took advantage by scoring for the third-straight inning to retake the lead with a two-run fourth. Sanchez drew a leadoff walk and advanced to second on a Knightes sacrifice bunt. Caruso then reached on an error as Sanchez advanced to third before Michael Donadio gave the Red Storm a 3-2 lead with an RBI fielder's choice. Wayman followed with another two-out RBI, a double to the wall in right center that gave St. John's a 4-2 lead.
A leadoff single and an error helped set the table for FAU to get a run back in the fifth. After Billy Endris singled to start the frame, Mitch Morales reached on an error and a sacrifice bunt quickly gave the Owls runners on second and third with one out. A walk then loaded the bases before Tyler Rocklein made it a 4-3 ballgame with a sacrifice fly to left field.
FAU threatened and chased McCormick in the sixth, but the bullpen kept the Owls off the board. McCormick retired the first two batters, but was lifted after CJ Chatham reached on a two-out single. Joey Christopher took the mound and Chatham went in motion and advanced to third as Endris legged out an infield single. Christopher, however, ended the inning with a strikeout.
The Red Storm looked to add some insurance runs in the seventh as Matt Harris singled with one out and Mederos singled with two outs, but reliever Bo Logan entered and ended the inning with a strikeout.
Christopher, meanwhile, worked a 1-2-3 seventh and a scoreless eighth to send the game to the ninth inning. The reliever retired the first two batters in the ninth frame, but was lifted after allowing a double and issuing a walk. Thomas Hackimer took the mound and walked the first batter he faced to load the bases with two outs. Hackimer, however, ended the game and notched his second save with a game-ending strikeout.
St. John's concludes its series against Florida Atlantic with a 1 p.m. rubber game on March 2.