REGULAR SEASON CHAMPS: McCormick Tosses Complete Game Shutout As St. John's Defeats Xavier, 5-0, To Clinch At Least Share Of League Title|
May 9, 2015
QUEENS, N.Y. - Ryan McCormick tossed his first-career complete shutout as St. John's clinched at least a share of its conference-record eighth BIG EAST regular season championship with a 5-0 win against Xavier. McCormick (9-1) racked up a career-high nine strikeouts, walked two and surrendered just three hits to earn the win. The complete game shutout was the first for a St. John's pitcher since Kyle Hansen went the distance and blanked Cincinnati on April 22, 2012.
Jarred Mederos went 1-for-3 with three RBI to help lead St. John's (31-14, 13-3), while Michael Donadio was 3-for-4 with a double and two runs scored. Joe Forney and Rylan Bannon each went 1-for-3 for Xavier (13-35, 2-12). Trent Astle (2-8) took the loss after allowing five runs in 6.1 innings of work.
After McCormick struck out two batters in a 1-2-3 top of the first, St. John's sent eight men to the plate and took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the frame. Robert Wayman started things with a one-out single before Donadio singled and Zach Lauricella reached on a fielder's choice to load the bases as Wayman beat the third baseman in a foot race to third. Mederos then lined a two-run single into center before a walk loaded the bases, but Astle stranded three runners with a flyout.
McCormick retired the first five batters he faced before allowing a two-out single in the second, but ended the inning with a strikeout.
The Red Storm took advantage of a leadoff single to extend its lead with a run in the third. Tyler Sanchez set the table with a single up the middle before Wayman grounded a one-out single through the left side. Lauricella then made it a 3-0 ballgame with a two-out RBI single into left field.
McCormick added another strikeout as part of a 1-2-3 third frame before Xavier had its first two batters reach in the fourth. David Morton singled to lead off the inning before Nate Soria walked, but McCormick retired the next three batters on a pair of infield popups and a groundout.
After working around a two-out single in the fifth, McCormick worked around a leadoff walk in the sixth by retiring the next three batters on a pair of strikeouts and a flyout.
McCormick retired the leadoff man in the seventh before Patrick Jones reached on an error, but the righty ended the inning with a 4-6-3 double play.
St. John's added to its lead in the bottom of the seventh after Donadio set the table with a leadoff double into left field. Matt Harris followed with a one-out RBI triple before Mederos gave the Red Storm a 5-0 lead with a sacrifice fly to left.
McCormick had one strikeout in a 1-2-3 eighth frame and added one more strikeout, his ninth, in a 1-2-3 ninth to end the game by retiring seven-straight batters.
St. John's concludes its series against Xavier on May 10 with a noon game that will be carried on the BIG EAST Digital Network (BEDN).