March 15, 2011
QUEENS, N.Y. - Playing in extra innings for the second time this season, St. John's used a Jeremy Baltz walk-off single in the 10th inning to defeat Fairfield, 2-1, and win its ninth-straight home-opener. Baltz finished 2-fo-4 with an RBI to pace St. John's (6-8), while Matt Wessinger was 2-for-4 and Sean O'Hare was 0-for-1 with three walks. Starter Brendan Lobban allowed just one run in 6.0 innings of work to pick up a no-decision, while Matt Carasiti (1-0) took the win in relief. Ryan Furbeck was 2-for-3 with an RBI for Fairfield (5-6), while starter Scott Warwick took a no-decision after allowing one run in 6.0 innings of work.
Lobban retired four of the first six batters he faced and held Fairfield scoreless through three innings before the Stags grabbed a run in the fourth inning to take a 1-0 lead. After Anthony Hajjar lined a one-out double off the wall in the left, Chris Horning singled up the middle to set up runners on second and third for Fairfield. Furbeck followed with an RBI single into centerfield as Fairfield plated the first run of the game.
Held hitless by Warwick through the first five innings, St. John's used a pair of hits in the sixth inning to tie the game at 1-1. Joe Witkowski singled through the left side to lead off the frame before advancing to second on a sacrifice bunt. After moving to third on a fly out, Witkowski came home on a wild pitch as Joe Panik walked. Baltz followed with a single, but was erased on a fielder's choice to end the inning.
St. John's put runners on first and second with no outs in the seventh against reliever Gavin McCullough, but the Stags worked out of the inning without allowing a run. After Sean O'Hare walked and Wessinger singled, the Stags erased the lead runner on an attempted sacrifice bunt and McCullough ended the inning with a double play.
After entering the game in relief of Lobban in the sixth, Sean Hagan worked 4.0 scoreless innings and retired 10 of the last 12 batters he faced to keep the score tied at 1-1.
In the bottom of the tenth McCullough quickly retired the first two batters before O'Hare drew a walk and Wessinger doubled. Pat Talbut was then intentionally walked to load the bases, but a fly out ended the inning and sent the game to extra innings.
Carasiti entered for St. John's in the 10th inning and had two strikeouts in a scoreless frame.
Fairfield brought in Brian Comiskey for the bottom of the tenth and St. John's plated the game-winner. Kyle Richardson set the table by with a one-out walk and advanced to third on Panik single. Baltz then blooped an RBI single into right field to plate Richardson with the winning run.
St. John's returns to action at Jack Kaiser Stadium on March 16, hosting Albany for a 3 p.m. game.