Saint Joe’s Scores 6 in the 9th To Earn Comeback Win Over SBU
ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – After the St. Bonaventure baseball team (17-17, 5-8 Atlantic 10 Conference) took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the 8th inning, Saint Joseph's (18-23, 8-4 A-10) responded with six runs in the 9th to open the three-game series with a 7-2 comeback victory over the Bonnies Friday afternoon at Fred Handler Park.
Junior Jason Radwan drove in what looked destined to be the game-winning run in the 8th with a single to left field to plate Eric Jutca. However, Radwan (3-3) then walked the leadoff hitter in the 9th as the Hawks scored their six runs off just three hits and one Bonaventure error.
Redshirt junior Eddie Gray (pictured) had a stellar start result in another unfortunate no-decision. Gray threw 128 pitches through his 7.2 innings of work in limiting the Hawks to just one run and striking out a season-high-tying eight batters. The Pulaski, N.Y. native scattered five hits before giving way to Radwan with runners on first and second.
Radwan and junior Billy Urban (pictured) each had two hits on the day, while Jutca delivered Bona's only other hit as Saint Joe's starter Kyle Mullen was equally as brilliant as Gray as he also tossed 7.2 innings in allowing just five hits and striking out six.
After Saint Joe's opened the scoring in its portion of the 4th with a solo home run to left, the Bonnies responded with a manufactured run in the bottom half of the frame. Radwan led off the inning with a walk, classmate Austin Ingraham advanced him to second with a sacrifice bunt and Urban scored him with a first-pitch, one-hop single in front of the left fielder.
The score would remain tied, 1-1, into the 8th before Radwan's hit broke the deadlock.
With the bases loaded and nobody out in the 9th inning, head coach Larry Sudbrook called on redshirt senior Cael Johnson to get the Bonnies out of the jam. Johnson induced a 3-0 popup to the second baseman by an SJU pinch hitter for the first out, keeping Bona in front, 2-1. However, a 2-1 pitch to the following batter just missed and Johnson eventually walked in the game-tying run.
A bunt just up the first-base line followed for the next Hawks' batter. Johnson lunged for the ball, but had to hurry his throw home and it was out of the reach of catcher Michael Grieco, allowing two runs to score and Saint Joe's never looked back.
The two teams will resume their set on Saturday with a Noon start from Fred Handler Park. Senior Jordan Crane is expected to get the start on the mound for the Bonnies.