FAIRFIELD, Conn. – After the games today, Head Coach Bill Curriertold his team that this was perhaps their most complete day of the season, and if you look at the statistics or were one of the faces in the large crowd today, you probably would agree. The Fairfield University baseball team used strong pitching and timely hitting to sweep a conference double header from Manhattan, clinching their fourth-straight series win of the season. Fairfield took the first contest 6-4 and then completed the sweep with a 6-0 shutout.
The Stags (12-13, 4-1 MAAC) took advantage in the first game when Manhattan (6-19, 3-5 MAAC) was forced to go into their bullpen just one batter into the game as their starter went down with an injury. Fairfield would bat around in the first inning as the Jaspers used three pitchers to get out of the frame. After three-straight walks to start the frame, Mac Crispinowas the first of four Stags to drive in a run as his RBI single opened the scoring. The Stags also got RBI singles from Troy Scoccaand Tim Zengwhile Michael Contiforced in a run with a walk during the frame.
The Stags surrendered two runs in the top of the fourth, but would get those runs right back on the first career home run by Mitch Williams.
John Signoremade that lead stick as he battled through seven innings, allowing two runs. Signore was efficient as he needed just 97 pitches in the outing and was at his best when runners were on base.
“He spotted his fastball well and had a change-up,” Currier said. “His breaking ball was the one he was struggling with today. But what I liked the most was that he battled when guys got on base. It seemed when runners were on the bases he pitched his best.”
Like he has done all season long, Gavin Wallacekept the pitching momentum in the second game and would complete his third complete game shutout of the season. The junior was absolutely dominating as he used 88 pitches to go the full seven scoreless innings scattering three hits while striking out five. Wallace retired the final 10 batters he faced, four of those by the strikeout.
With his three shutouts, Wallace has already tied the single-season program record with Keefe Cato and Steve Becker who also recorded three shutouts in 1977 and 1989 respectively.
“He was very solid the whole game,” Currier said. “Pretty much he had two pitches, he didn’t throw too many change-ups, but he certainly had good movement and run on his fastball today. He was down and in on the righties and away to the lefties and threw some good sliders when he needed it.”
Offensively, the Stags once again used a four-run frame to set the game apart, which came in the third. With the bases loaded, Jack Gethingschopped a ball past the shortstop, scoring the first run of the game. Kevin Radziewiczbrought two more runners home with a single and Crispino capped the scoring in the inning with a run scoring single.
The Stags added an unearned run in the fourth and a Conti RBI single in the fifth to account for the 6-0 final score.
Three Stags combined for three hits in the twin bill with Conti, Radziewicz, and Tyler Gambardellaleading the squad.
Fairfield will try for their first series sweep of the season when they wrap up their slate against the Jaspers tomorrow at noon.