March 11, 2014
YAPHANK, N.Y. – Freshman Andrew Zapata had a no-hitter into the seventh inning of his first career start and led the UConn baseball team past Sacred Heart, 5-0, on Tuesday afternoon at the Baseball Heaven Complex. With the win, UConn snaps a five-game losing skid and moves to 5-8 on the season, while Sacred Heart drops to 3-5.
Vinny Siena (Woodbridge, Conn.) drove in four of UConn’s five runs, going 1-for-3 with a three-run home run and a sacrifice fly. Eric Yavarone (North Haven, Conn.) went 3-for-4 with a run and an RBI for the Huskies, and Aaron Hill (Groton, Conn.) also was 3-for-4 and added a run and a steal. Jack Sundberg (Mansfield, Conn.) went 1-for-4 and scored a pair of runs along with a stolen base.
Zapata (Staten Island, N.Y.) made his first career start for UConn and was brilliant, tossing seven shutout innings and allowing one hit and four walks to go with five strikeouts. Sacred Heart also started a rookie in Jason Foley, who went six innings and allowed one run on six hits with a walk and two strikeouts.
The Huskies jumped on the board in the first inning, capitalizing on game-opening singles from Sundberg and Yavarone before Siena drove in the game’s first run with a sacrifice fly. UConn threatened again in the second with a pair of two-out singles to put runners on the corners, but Foley got out of the jam with a fly out.
Zapata (1-1) cruised through the middle innings, tossing his first 1-2-3 frame in the fourth inning before adding another in the top of the sixth. With two away in the seventh, Sacred Heart picked up its first hit of the day, spoiling the no-hit bid.
Connecticut built on its lead in the bottom half of the seventh. After Hill singled and Sundberg reached on an error, the two runners advanced to second and third with a double steal. Yavarone scored Hill with an infield single to make it 2-0, putting two on for Siena. The UConn second baseman cracked his first home run of the year to left field, a three-run blast to give the Huskies a 5-0 lead.
Devin Over (Windsor, Conn.) replaced Zapata in the top of the eighth, and struck out a pair of batters in his two innings of work to seal the win for the Huskies.
Up next, UConn will head to Philadelphia to participate in the Big 5 Baseball Bash. The Huskies are slated to take on St. Peter’s on Friday, March 14 before visiting La Salle on Saturday, March 15 and Villanova on Sunday, March 16.
- Andrew Zapata had a no-hitter broken up with two outs in the top of the seventh.
- Vinny Siena’s seventh-inning home run was first long ball of the season and the second of his career. It also extended his hitting streak to 18 games, dating back to last season. The sophomore has reached base safely in 24 consecutive outings.
- Eric Yavarone recorded his sixth mult-hit game, most on the Huskies. It was also his second straight game with at least two hits.
- Max McDowell stole his first base of the season in the sixth inning. UConn now has stolen bases from seven different players on the year. The Huskies swiped a season-high three on Tuesday.