SOUTH ORANGE, N.J. - The UConn baseball team (13-8) split a doubleheader at Seton Hall (7-10) with a 3-0 setback and a 6-3 victory on Sunday afternoon at Owen T. Carroll Field. The contest clinched the weekend series with the Pirates for the Huskies, who have now won their last five weekend series. UConn also concluded its nine-day, eight-game, four-state Spring Break trip with a 6-2 record.
After being shut out in game one for the first time in 2015, the Huskies bounced back with 14 hits in game two to pick up the split. Willy Yahn (Sharon, Conn.) led the Huskies in the doubleheader with four hits and two doubles in the two games, while Vinny Siena (Woodbridge, Conn.) and Max McDowell (North Huntingdon, Pa.) combined to go 7-for-7 in game two.
GAME ONE RECAP
Anthony Kay (Stony Brook, N.Y.) started for UConn and allowed three runs (one earned) in 6.2 innings, striking out seven in a tough-luck loss. He was out-dueled by Seton Hall freshman Shane McCarthy, who fired a complete-game shutout to blank the Huskies for the first time in 2015.
After a quiet start, the Pirates got on the board first with a pair of runs, scoring twice with a two-run single from Zack Weigel in the bottom of the third. Seton Hall tacked on another with an unearned run in the bottom of the fifth, scoring with an RBI groundout after an error to go up 3-0 through five.
Yahn led off the sixth with a double for the Huskies, but a a flyout and a pair of groundouts for McCarthy stranded Yahn on the third. Kay exited with two on and one out in the bottom of the seventh, and Ryan Radue (Appleton, Wis.) came on and was able to work out of the jam and keep it a three-run game.
Yahn and Jack Sundberg (Mansfield, Conn.) each picked up two-out singles to give the Huskies a pair of baserunners in the top of the eighth before McCarthy ended the threat again with a fly ball to center. Davey smacked a one-out double in the ninth to try and lead a rally for the Huskies before McCarthy closed out the complete game shutout with a pair of ground balls.
GAME TWO RECAP
Jordan Tabakman (Pompton Plains, N.J.) got the start for the Huskies and pitched well, allowing three runs (two earned) on six hits with a walk. He was opposed by six different SHU pitchers in the 6-3 UConn victory.
UConn wasted no time ensuring it would not be shut out in back-to-back games, with Blake Davey (Newport Beach, Calif.) capping a streak of three straight singles in the top of the first with an RBI knock to put the Huskies up 1-0. The Pirates responded quickly with two runs in the bottom of the frame, using an RBI single and an RBI groundout to go ahead 2-1.
The Huskies battled back to jump ahead again in the top of the second, scoring a pair of two-out runs. Yahn started the rally with a single and came home to score on a Sundberg triple deep to left-center field. Sundberg scampered home on a wild pitch during the next batter and the Huskies took a 3-2 lead.
UConn tacked on another run in the third inning, following back-to-back singles with an RBI bunt hit from Bryan Daniello (Norwalk, Conn.) to plate Davey. Yahn stretched the lead to three with an RBI double in the sixth, before SHU reliever Sam Burum was able to strand the bases loaded in the frame.
The Pirates grabbed a run back with an RBI single in the bottom of the sixth that cut the UConn lead to 5-3. Tabakman exited for UConn with two away and a runner on third in the bottom of the seventh, giving way to Nico Darras (Laguna Beach, Calif.) for an inning-ending strikeout.
Darras struck out two more in the bottom of the eighth, before Patrick Ruotolo (Peabody, Mass.) came on with a runner on and two away for yet another punch-out. The Huskies picked up an insurance run in the ninth with an RBI groundout from Eric Yavarone (North Haven, Conn.) before Ruotolo came back for the ninth and struck out the side to notch his third save of the year.
Up next, the Huskies continue midweek play with their first two games of 2015 in the state of Connecticut. UConn will visit Yale on Tuesday, March 24 and Central Connecticut on Wednesday, March 25.
UConn is now 35-46 all-time against Seton Hall and 14-12 in Jim Penders' 12-year tenure as head coach
Willy Yahn notched his first two career multi-hit games and first two doubles in the doubleheader
Vinny Siena recorded singles in the first inning of both games to extend his hitting streak to 12 games
Siena recorded his first four-hit game of the season in game two and his ninth multi-hit game. His last four-hit game came on May 26, 2013 in the Big East Championship game vs. Notre Dame
Game one of the doubleheader was the first time in 2015 UConn has been shut out
Bobby Melley has reached base safely in 14 straight contests