Harris Totals Four RBI As St. John's Rallies To Defeat Xavier, 9-5|
May 8, 2015
QUEENS, N.Y. - Matt Harris broke a 5-5 tie with a sacrifice fly in the seventh inning and matched a career-high with four RBI as St. John's rallied back from a 3-0 first-inning deficit to defeat Xavier, 9-5. Harris finished 2-for-4 with a double, a three-run triple and two runs scored to lead St. John's (30-14, 12-3). Alex Caruso and Tyler Sanchez each finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored, while Michael Donadio went 1-for-4 with two RBI. Joe Kuzia (1-1) tossed 1.2 scoreless frames of relief to earn the win. Nate Soria finished 1-for-4 with a home run and three RBI for Xavier (13-34, 2-11), while Patrick Jones went 3-for-4 with two RBI. Greg Jacknewitz (3-5) took the loss after allowing two runs in 3.0 innings of relief.
Xavier sent eight men to the plate as part of a three-run first inning. After the leadoff batter was retired, David Morton singled up the middle and Soria followed with a two-run home run to left field. Derek Hasenbeck extended the inning with an infield single and Joe Forney singled with two outs before Jones made it 3-0 with an RBI single up the middle.
St. John's got a run back in the second after Harris set the table with a one-out double. Harris advanced to third on a groundout and scored on a wild pitch as the Red Storm cut its deficit to 3-1.
The Red Storm then sent nine men to the plate and took a 5-3 lead with a four-run third. Sanchez got things started with a leadoff single to deep short before Caruso reached on a bunt single up the first baseline. Robert Wayman advanced both runners with a sacrifice bunt before Zach Lauricella drew a two-out walk to load the bases. Harris then cleared the bases with a three-run triple to the gap in left center before scoring on a wild pitch.
The Musketeers chased Cody Stashak and answered with a run in the fourth. Will LaRue led off with a single and promptly stole second. A groundout moved LaRue to third and St. John's went to the bullpen. Alex Katz came on and Soria lifted a sacrifice fly into left field as Xavier pulled to within 5-4.
Xavier plated another run in the fifth to tie the game at 5-5. Andre Jernigan led off with a single, but was caught stealing before Forney restarted things with a one-out double. Jones followed with an RBI single as the Musketeers leveled the score.
Xavier threatened in the sixth, but Kuzia came on to escape the jam. A leadoff single, a sacrifice bunt and an error gave the Musketeers runners on the corners with one out and sent the Red Storm to the bullpen. Kuzia promptly caught a line drive and doubled off the runner at first to end the inning.
After Kuzia tossed a 1-2-3 seventh, St. John's took the lead with two runs in the bottom of the frame. Donadio set the table with a one-out walk and moved to third on a Lauricella single into right center. Harris followed with a sacrifice fly and Jarred Mederos added an RBI single as St. John's took a 7-5 lead.
Thomas Hackimer came on in the eighth and struck out the side as part of a 1-2-3 frame.
St. John's then sent eight men to the plate in the bottom of the eighth and added two more runs. Anthony Brocato led off with a pinch-hit single up the middle before Sanchez reached on an infield single as pinch runner Ty Blankmeyer advanced all the way to third. Caruso followed with a squeeze bunt, but the attempt was unsuccessful as Blankmeyer was tagged out at the plate. After Jesse Berardi was plunked to load the bases with one out, Donadio gave the Red Storm a 9-5 lead with a two-run single.
Hackimer quickly retired the first two batters in the ninth before a walk and an infield single extended the inning. The righty, however, induced a game-ending fielder's choice to secure his 11th save.
St. John's continues its series against Xavier on May 9 with a 2 p.m. game that will be televised on CBS Sports Network.