Maryland pitching sweeps doubleheader, 3-game series

By Mike Radomski

Mother Nature forced Quinnipiac and Maryland to play a doubleheader on Saturday with the Terrapins stealing both games and sweeping the series.

In Game 1, Maryland starter Scott Swinson pitched a marvelous game allowing just one run in 6 1/3 innings pitch for the 10-2 win.

Game 2 witnessed another phenomenal outing from Maryland pitcher Matt Fullerton who shut down the Bobcats in the 7-1 victory.

Swinson and Bobcat starter Andy Mayer were locked in a pitcher’s duel well into the fifth inning.

Quinnipiac would take a 1-0 lead in Game 1 on a sacrifice fly from Tyler Turgeon but Maryland would tie it up in the bottom of the third.

In the fifth, A.J. Casario singled home a run and Jensen Pupa would add another on an RBI groundout. The 3-1 lead was more than enough for Swinson who only allowed five hits while picking up six strikeouts in his first win of the season.

The pitcher’s duel broke wide open in the sixth inning when Maryland would put a six-spot up on the scoreboard. Five straight batters contributed with RBI plate appearances with the biggest one being an RBI triple from David Poutier as the Terps would take a 9-1 lead on their way to the victory.

Mayer took the loss for the Bobcats. He went five innings, allowing three earned runs in the process. He was relieved by Kyle Birdsall who made his collegiate debut and lasted just one third of an inning.  He yielded six runs, five of which were earned. Joe Cesarini finished going 2 2/3 innings allowing just one run. Cesarini missed 2008 due to an injury.

In Game 2, starters Matt Fullerton and Mike Oskandy would battle back and forth in a quickly moving pitcher’s duel. Maryland would strike first with a two-run home run from Gerry Spessard in the second inning.

The home run was more than enough for Fullerton who continued to shut down the Bobcats. In the sixth, Quinnipiac would score a run on a groundout from Chris Migani to close the gap down the one.

The Terps would then take advantage of a few Bobcats mistakes in the sixth inning. Back-to-back errors from Migani and Mickey Amanti (Waterford, CT) prolonged the inning, scoring two more runs, and taking the 4-1 lead.

Adam Kolarek would finish off the game, pitching three innings in relief to earn his first save of the season. Kolarek allowed just two hits while striking out two Bobcats in the 7-1 Terps win. Oskandy pitched seven innings for the Bobcats in the loss, allowing five runs (one earned) and striking out three. Tony Cinelli pitched the final inning, his first collegiate appearance, by yielding two runs on 3 hits.

The Bobcats start the season 0-3 as the Terrapins return to the .500 mark at 4-4.

Alfredo Rodriguez finished the doubleheader 5-for-8 as he raised his batting average to .250 on the season. Gerry Spessard also played well in the double dip going 4-for-5 with a home run, six RBI and five runs scored.

Maryland will travel to nearby Towson on March 3 for a 2:30 contest. Quinnipiac will now return to Connecticut for the week before they embark on their annual spring break trip on Thursday.

Click here to view the box score from Game 1.

Click here to view the box score from Game 2.

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