Last updateThu, 02 Apr 2020 1pm


Baseball Scores Five in Ninth to Defeat Penn State

Baseball 02.28.18Following a three-game sweep at the hands of #11 Dallas Baptist to open the season, the Monmouth University baseball team collected its first two wins of the season during the Penn State Tournament this past weekend in Cary, NC.

Monmouth entered the Penn State Tournament this past weekend with a record of 0-3, facing games against #23 St. John’s, Penn State, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). They would go on to pick up back-to-back wins against Penn State and UMBC to wrap up the three-game set.

Monmouth’s first win of the season came in a dramatic fashion in a back-and-forth affair with Penn State on Feb. 24. Heading in to the ninth inning, down 8-4 the Hawks rallied back to take a 9-8 lead. The comeback in the ninth started with a one-out single courtesy of junior catcher Clay Koniencki who came in to pinch hit. Junior outfielder Kyle Norman followed with a double and then senior infielder Shaine Hughes drove them both in with a double of his own. The rally was completed when junior catcher J.D. Andreessen hit his first home run as a Hawk and senior infielder Pete Papcun followed with another homer to give the blue and white the lead. The Hawks’ first win of the season was secured following a save in the bottom half of the ninth courtesy of sophomore right-handed pitcher Danny Long.

Penn State opened the scoring in the game by plating two in second on a single and an error. The Hawks answered with two runs of their own in the third thanks to a run batted in (RBI) ground out by Norman and an RBI double by Andreesen. The Nittany Lions would go back on top again with three runs in the fourth. The Hawks would answer in the sixth to trim the score to 5-4 on a Papcun RBI double but Penn State responded with three more runs to make it 8-4 before the Hawks mounted their comeback.

“First off, what a great comeback and team win. I am really proud of the team today. We have been locking horns with some real good teams and today was no different,” said Head Coach Dean Ehehalt. “Our guys really showed a lot of grit and fight this afternoon.”

The Hawks followed their first win of the season by routing UMBC 17-5 to conclude the weekend on Feb. 25. Hughes opened the scoring in the first with a home run followed by a Papcun RBI double to make it 2-0 after one. The scoring continued in the second with an RBI double by Norman, making it 4-0.

The Retrievers answered with a three-run homer in the fourth to bring them within a run, but the Hawks responded shortly after with an RBI single by Norman and an RBI double by Papcun to make the score 7-3 after four.

The scoring was on from there for the Hawks as Norman, Hughes, Papcun, and freshman first baseman Ryan Steckline had RBI hits in the sixth to make it 11-3. The Hawks continued to pour on the offense in the seventh as a run scoring error sandwiched between RBI doubles courtesy of Norman and Steckline made the score 16-5. Norman added an RBI triple in the eighth to cap the scoring at 17 runs.

Freshman right-handed pitcher Dan Klepchick pitched seven strong innings for the Hawks while not walking a single batter. Norman finished the day 5-for-6 with four extra base hits and six RBIs and not far behind him was Papcun who drove in four runs with three doubles.

While the Hawks closed out the weekend with consecutive wins, they dropped a matchup with #23 St. John’s on Feb. 23 by a score of 3-0. Senior right-handed pitcher Ricky Dennis struck out five while only allowing one run over six strong innings, but the Hawks’ offense could not get on the board as they left ten men on base over the course of the game.

Following the win over UMBC on Sunday, Ehehalt was pleased with the effort over the Retrievers and the weekend as a whole, “The top of our order was extremely productive; Kyle had a big day, Shaine and Pete also got some big RBIs. All in all a very positive weekend.”

The Hawks will take the field again on Friday, beginning a three-game series with George Washington University in Arlington, VA.

PHOTO COURTESY of Andy Mead, YCJ Photos

Contact Information

The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151