May 9, 2014
QUEENS, N.Y. - Robert Wayman broke a tie game and capped a two-out rally with an RBI single in the eighth as St. John's won its 10th-straight conference game and moved into sole possession of first place in the BIG EAST standings with a 6-5 win against Creighton. Wayman finished 1-for-3 with an RBI, a run and two walks, while Troy Dixon went 1-for-4 with an RBI double to help lead St. John's (32-15, 11-2). Matt Clancy (3-3) earned the win with 2.0 innings of one-run ball in relief of James Lomangino, who took a no-decision after striking out six and allowing four runs, three earned, in 6.0 innings. Ryan Fitzgerald finished 3-for-4 with two runs and Mike Gerber was 2-for-4 with two RBI to pace Creighton (25-15-1, 10-3). Bryan Sova (4-1) surrendered one run in 2.0 innings of relief to take the loss.
After Lomangino struck out the side in the first inning to work around a one-out double, St. John's tried to put together a two-out rally in the bottom of the frame. Tommy Strunc retired the first two batters before Wayman extended the inning with a walk. Harris then lined a single into center field, but Strunc ended the inning with a strikeout.
The Bluejays, however, took the lead with a run in the second. Nicky Lopez set the table with a one-out single and took second on a wild pitch before Cody Kottich made it a 1-0 game with an RBI single into center.
St. John's answered immediately with three runs in the bottom of the frame. Michael Donadio got things started with a double into the right field corner before a Zach Lauricella single gave the Red Storm runners on the corners. Robbie Knightes then tied the game with an RBI single through the right side. After a wild pitch advanced the runners to second and third, Dixon put the Red Storm up 3-1 with a two-out, two-run double into centerfield.
Creighton promptly responded and retook the lead with a three-run third. Fitzgerald led off with a single up the middle before Jake Peter singled to center, but took second on the throw to third. Gerber then reached on a slow-rolling RBI infield single, but a throwing error on the play allowed a second run to score. Brett Murray added an RBI single to left and Creighton led 4-3.
The back-and-forth scoring continued as the Red Storm tied the game with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Matt Harris was plunked to lead off the inning and the Bluejays lifted Strunc. Max Ising then plunked Bret Dennis before a Donadio sacrifice bunt left St. John's with runners on second and third. Lauricella followed with a sacrifice fly to the tie the game at 4-4.
Lomangino, meanwhile, settled down to toss 1-2-3 frames in fourth and fifth before ending his day with a scoreless sixth.
Creighton, however, retook the lead in the seventh with a run against the bullpen. Clancy took the mound and retired his first batter before Fitzgerald reached on an infield single. After Fitzgerald took second on a wild pitch, Peter drew a walk and Gerber gave the Bluejays a 5-4 lead with an RBI single into left.
St. John's had an immediate answer once again and tied the game with a run in the bottom of the seventh. A leadoff walk to Wayman sent Creighton back to the bullpen in favor of Sova, who got Harris to groundout as Wayman took second. Dennis followed with an infield single deep in the hole at short and Donadio tied the game at 5-5 with a sacrifice fly.
After two strikeouts from Clancy in a 1-2-3 eighth, the Red Storm retook the lead for good with a two-out rally in the bottom of the inning. Knightes led off with a single into left field, but was thrown out at second trying to stretch for a double. Following a strikeout, Alex Caruso restarted things with a two-out walk before Dixon also drew a walk. Wayman then lined an RBI single up the middle to score Caruso from second and give St. John's a 6-5 lead.
Joe Kuzia took the mound in the ninth and worked around back-to-back one-out walks to record his league-leading 12th save of the season.
St. John's continues its series against Creighton on May 10 with a 1 p.m. game that will be carried live on ESPN3.