SAN ANTONIO – A five-run eighth inning propelled the UConn baseball team to a 9-6 win over UTSA on Sunday in the finale of a three-game set at Roadrunner Field. With the victory, the Huskies improve to 1-2, while UTSA ends the first weekend of play at 2-1.
Senior captain Bobby Melley (Barnstable, Mass.) led the offensive attack, going 3-for-4 with four RBIs and two runs scored. Fellow captain Jack Sundberg (Mansfield, Conn.) reached base four times and scored three runs, while redshirt-junior catcher Alex LeFevre went 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles and an RBI.
On the hill, junior RHP Andrew Zapata (Staten Island, N.Y.) made the start, lasting 2.0 innings, while his counterpart Aaron Burns threw 2.2 innings. Redshirt-freshman Jack Riley (1-0) picked up his first collegiate win, tossing a clean seventh inning, while freshman Randy Polonia (Stamford, Conn.) earned the save after pitching a scoreless ninth inning.
The Huskies struck first for the third-straight game, taking a 1-0 edge in the top of the first when sophomore standout Willy Yahn (Sharon, Conn.) roped a double down the right field line to plate Sundberg, who opened the game with a walk.
The Roadrunners responded with a three-run second inning, stringing together four hits, including a two-run double off the bat of Skyler Valentine. Melley pulled the Huskies within one when he crushed a homer to centerfield to cut the score to 3-2. For Melley, the hit marked his 221st of his career, tying him with former teammate Vinny Siena (2013-15) for 10th in program history.
In the bottom of the third, the Roadrunners pushed two across the plate, taking advantage of three hits, a walk, and a hit-by-pitch. LeFerve cut the deficit to 5-3 in the fourth, dropping in a single to left field to score senior shortstop Bryan Daniello (Nowalk, Conn.).
With the Huskies down 6-4 in the top of the eighth, LeFevre and John Toppa (Portsmouth, R.I.) delivered back-to-back hits before Sundberg reached on an error and Yahn walked. Melley gave the Huskies their first lead since the second inning with an RBI single up the middle before Connecticut tacked on two runs to take a 9-6 advantage on back-to-back wild pitches.
Freshman Ronnie Rossomando shined in his collegiate debut, spinning three scoreless innings of relief with a pair of strikeouts in the setback
With the victory, UConn improves to 11-14 against teams from the conference USA.
Next up, UConn travels to Clarkville, Tenn. when it plays Missouri St. in a neutral game on Friday, Feb. 26.
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