No. 9 St. John's Takes Doubleheader from Maine

Sean Mooney became the first St. John's pitcher since Ryan McCormick on May 9, 2015 to record a complete game shutout
March 25, 2017

QUEENS, N.Y. - Playing its first games of the year at Jack Kaiser Stadium, the No. 9 St. John's Red Storm registered a pair of convincing wins over Maine at Saturday afternoon.

Game One

Making just the third start of his St. John's career, Sean Mooney delivered his third stellar performance in as many tries for the Red Storm, recording the program's first complete game shutout in two seasons in a 3-0 win over Maine in the first game of a doubleheader on Saturday afternoon at Jack Kaiser Stadium.


 

 

The freshman from Marmora, N.J., was in total control from start to finish, surrendering no runs, no walks and only four hits, needing just 99 pitches to record the complete game shutout. Entering the game ranked ninth in the nation in WHIP, Mooney lowered that number to 0.62 on the season and moved his ERA under one (0.88) through 30.2 innings of work. The right hander became the first St. John's player to register a complete-game shutout since Ryan McCormick on May 9, 2015 against Xavier.

Seniors Robbie Knightes and Michael Donadio drove in runs for the Red Storm in the game, as the Johnnies improved to 16-2 on the campaign.

Jamie Galazin led off the bottom of the third with a double down the left field line, but the Red Storm had an early lead stolen as what looked like a surefire double to the gap by Donadio was corralled with a leaping snag by the Maine second baseman.

After another scoreless frame for the Johnnies, the Red Storm broke through in the bottom of the fifth. With two outs and no one on, Galazin was hit by a pitch before John Valente extended his hitting streak to 30 games with a single to left. Always a dangerous base runner, Galazin advanced to third on the play. With runners on the corners, Galazin came in to score on a passed ball, giving the Red Storm the first lead of the game.

The Johnnies extended their lead by a pair in the home half of the seventh, taking a 3-0 lead with only two innings to play. Gui Gingras led off the frame with a single to center before coming out of the game for Mike Antico to enter as a pinch runner. Next up was Anthony Brocato, who singled to left, allowing Antico to advance to third on a hit-and-run. Knightes then stepped up to the plate and poked a fly ball deep enough to left field to bring Antico home from third on the sac fly. After Brocato advanced to second on the throw, Galazin tried to bring him home with a single through the right side, but Brocato was gunned out at the plate by the right fielder. After Galazin stole second and Valente walked, Donadio stepped to the dish and delivered an RBI single to right, giving the Red Storm the 3-0 lead with which they would end the game.

Game Two

After surrendering the first three runs of the contest in the first inning and a half, the St. John's Red Storm unleashed the final nine runs of the game in the latter edition of a Saturday twin bill, defeating Maine by a score of 9-3.

Galazin led the way with a 2-for-4, three RBI effort, while Jesse Berardi went 3-for-3 with a two walks and an RBI. Donadio and Robert Boselli III also registered multi-hit outings, while Valente, Brocato and Jordan Gillerman each brought home a run.

One of the nation's most dangerous offensive threats, Valente saw him school-record hitting streak come to an close after 30 games.

Jeff Belge picked up his third win of the season, allowing two earned runs over six innings while striking out four. Over his final four frames, the freshman lefthander from Syracuse, N.Y., surrendered only one hit.

Sophomore reliever Joe Kelly went nine-up, nine-down over the final three innings to record his second save of the season.

After failing to get anything going offensively in the first contest of the twin bill, the Black Bears struck quickly in game number two, plating three runs in the first two frames to take a 3-0 lead after one and a half.

The Johnnies trimmed the deficit to two in the bottom of the second, as Boselli knocked a double down the right field line before eventually coming around to score on a field error by the first baseman.

Maine maintained its lead over the next few innings before the Red Storm released an offensive explosion in the bottom of the fifth. After Donadio was hit by a pitch to lead off the frame, Berardi deftly ducked the tag of the Maine first baseman, recording an infield single and giving the Johnnies runners on first and second with no out. Following a Gingras sac bunt that moved both runners 90 feet, Shaw was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Brocato and Gillerman then drew consecutive run-scoring walks to knot the contest at three aside before Boselli knocked a single to right center to give St. John's a 4-3 lead. With the bases still loaded and Galazin at the plate, the junior center fielder hit a three-run triple to the right field corner, putting the Red Storm up by four. With only one out, the Johnnies were not done yet, as Valente muscled a sacrifice fly to center, closing out a seven-run frame for the Red Storm.

St. John's added another run in the bottom of the seventh, as Donadio hit a two-out triple to the wall in right before coming around to score on a Berardi single.

St. John's and Maine will close out their series tomorrow with a 1 p.m. showdown at Jack Kaiser Stadium.

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