LoPresti Leads Combined Two-Hitter As St. John’s Defeats Creighton, 6-2|
May 21, 2016
QUEENS, N.Y. - Starter Michael LoPresti worked into the sixth and combined with two relievers on a two-hitter as St. John’s concluded the regular season with a 6-2 victory against Creighton.
LoPresti (3-0) allowed two singles in 5.1 innings of two-run ball for the victory, while Joe Napolitano (2.2 IP) and Thomas Hackimer (1.0 IP) combined to retire 11-straight batters in 3.2 inning of perfect relief to lead St. John’s (27-24-1, 9-9). Michael Donadio was 3-for-3 with two runs scored and Robbie Knightes went 1-for-4 with a double and two RBI. Jesse Berardi (1-for-3) and Anthony Brocato (0-for-3) had an RBI apiece.
Reagan Fowler finished 1-for-3 with two RBI for Creighton (36-15, 13-5), while Keith Rogalla (5-3) took the loss after allowing three runs, two earned, in 7.0 innings of work.
After LoPresti tossed a 1-2-3 frame to open the game, St. John’s had its first three batters reach as part of a three-run first frame. Alex Caruso worked a four-pitch to start things before John Valente grounded a single up the middle. Donadio followed with a bunt single, but reached second on an errant throw as two runs came around to score. Berardi added an RBI single and the Red Storm quickly led 3-0.
LoPresti, meanwhile, retired his first nine batters, but a wild pitch on a strikeout with two outs in the third opened the door for two Creighton runs. After Keith Oren reached on the dropped third strike, the next two batters also reached to load the bases with two outs. Fowler then made it a 3-2 ballgame with a two-run single.
St. John’s looked to respond immediately, but stranded a runner at third in the third. Donadio singled with one out and took second on a wild pitch before moving to third on a groundout. Rogalla, however, ended the inning with a flyout.
LoPresti tossed a 1-2-3 fourth and tossed a scoreless fifth before being lifted with a runner on first and one out in the sixth. Napolitano entered and promptly retired his first two batters to end the inning.
Napolitano worked a 1-2-3 seventh and added a 1-2-3 eighth to retire all eight batters he faced.
St. John’s then tacked on three insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth against the Creighton bullpen. Donadio greeted reliever Nick Highberger with a leadoff single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt before taking third on a wild pitch. The Bluejays then intentionally walked Berardi and went to the bullpen for David Gerber. Brocato followed with a sacrifice fly before Knightes gave St. John’s a 6-2 lead with a two-out, two-run double inside the right field line.
Hackimer had one strikeout in a 1-2-3 ninth to close out the victory.