Five Home Runs Propel St. John's Past Cincinnati, 16-8|
April 18, 2009
QUEENS, N.Y. - Sophomore Joe Panik had five RBI and two of St. John's five home runs in a 16-8 victory against Cincinnati. Greg Hopkins, Joe Witkowski and Tim Morris each added home runs and every Red Storm starter had at least one hit. Hopkins had three RBI, while Morris and Witkowski added two apiece to lead St. John's (20-13, 9-5). Bruce Kern (3-2) earned the win, tallying 10 strikeouts in 6.0 innings of work. T.J. Jones, Mike Spina and Jimmy Jacquot each homered for Cincinnati (17-18, 6-8).
The Bearcats took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first. After striking out the first batter of the game, Kern plunked Cameron Satterwhite before issuing back-to-back walks to load the bases. Justin Riddell then plated a run with an RBI fielder's choice before Kern ended the frame with his second strikeout.
St. John's sent 10 men to the plate in a five-run bottom of the first inning. Brian Kemp singled into right field to lead off the first, but reached second when Satterwhite bobbled the ball on the play. Morris walked with one out before Hopkins blasted a three-run home run straight down the left field line. With two outs St. John's strung together four-straight hits as Matt Wessinger and Carlos Del Rosario each singled before Witkowski bounced an RBI single through the right side. Gino Matias followed with an RBI double as St. John's took a 5-1 lead.
The Red Storm added two runs in the second to go up 7-1. After Jimmy Parque led off with a single, he was erased at second as Morris reached on a fielder's choice. Panik then launched a two-run home run into the bullpen in right center.
Witkowski led off a four-run third with a solo home run to center field. After back-to-back singles by Matias and Kemp gave St. John's runners on first and third, Parque singled through the right side to plate Matias and give the Red Storm a 9-1 lead. Morris followed with a sacrifice fly before Parque, who advanced from first to third on a pair of wild pitches, scored on a throwing error by the catcher.
Kern would eventually retire seven batters in a row, including five consecutive strikeouts, before allowing back-to-back singles to open the fifth. After a Satterwhite RBI double, Spina belted a three-run home run to left field and Cincinnati trailed 11-5.
Panik connected on his second home run of the game to give St. John's a 14-5 lead in the fifth inning. Parque drew a lead a lead off walk and Morris reached on an error to set the stage for Panik. The freshman then launched a three-run blast down the right field line, the Red Storm's fourth home run of the game.
After Kern allowed a solo shot to Jacquot to lead off the seventh, St. John's went to the bullpen. Miguel Valcarcel entered and gave up a home run to Jones to make the score 14-7 before retiring the next two batters. Durham then doubled before back-to-back walks loaded the bases and Ryan Cole replaced Valcarcel. Cole walked Peters to force in a run before striking out Beach Brooks to end the inning.
On the first pitch of the bottom of the seventh, Morris blasted his eighth home run of the year to give St. John's a 15-8 lead. Hopkins was then plunked before Wessinger singled with one out and moved to second on the throw, giving the Red storm runners on second and third. Del Rosario then gave the Red Storm a 16-8 lead with an RBI double.
St. John's and Cincinnati conclude the three game set on April 19 at noon.