April 2, 2012
AMHERST, Mass. – The University of Connecticut baseball team rallied for nine runs in the seventh and freshman left-hander Jared Dettmann (Somerset, Wis.) went six innings in a 12-5 win at Massachusetts, Monday afternoon. The Huskies improved to 15-12 overall, winners of nine out of 10, while the Minutemen dropped to 6-10 overall.
“We needed the guys to adapt to the approach where we were going to hit the ball on the ground,” said head coach Jim Penders after the win. “It was a tough day to score runs [hitting the ball] in the air. We finally got the ball on the ground and forced [UMass] to make some plays and found some holes in the infield and had a nice big inning.”
Trailing 3-2, sophomore shortstop Tom Verdi (Warwick, R.I.) got things started in the top of the seventh with a one-out single, stole second and advanced to third on a balk. Freshman left fielder Eric Yavarone (North Haven, Conn.) brought Verdi in with the game-tying run on a single to right. Yavarone later scored the go-ahead run, from second, on an infield single that ricocheted off the glove of the UMass first baseman by redshirt-junior center fielder Billy Ferriter (Nashua, N.H.).
UConn loaded the bases on an infielder single to the second base bag by senior first baseman Ryan Fuller (Old Lyme, Conn.). Junior second baseman LJ Mazzilli (Greenwich, Conn.) added to the lead with a two-run base hit up the middle. Freshman Connor David (Cheshire, Conn.) entered the game as a pinch hitter and delivered another infield single to second, scoring Fuller from third. David is now 4-7 in pinch-hit opportunities this season.
The Huskies added four more runs in the seventh on a two-run single up the middle by Verdi and a two-run line drive single to right by DeBellis, his second hit of the inning, to push the lead to 11-3. Verdi stole two bases in the seventh.
Dettmann (2-0) left the game after the sixth with an eight-run lead. He gave up three runs, all unearned, on four hits and four walks, while striking out three. Massachusetts started freshman lefty Conor LeBlanc for his first collegiate start, but it was freshman righty Dan Stoops that took the loss in relief. LeBlanc pitched 6.1 innings, allowing three runs, two earned, on six hits and a walk.
Connecticut started the game with two runs in the first inning as Fuller roped a double down the left field line and stole third, his sixth of the season, scoring on a base hit through the right side by Mazzilli. Mazzilli drew a throw to second from LeBlanc that rolled into center field, moving Mazzilli to third. Mazzilli then scored on a sacrifice fly to right by redshirt-senior catcher Joe Pavone (Rochester, N.Y.).
Redshirt freshmen Jordan Tabakman (Pompton Plains, N.J.) and David Mahoney (Colchester, Conn.) each made appearances out of the bullpen for UConn. Tabakman, a right-handed reliever, pitched the seventh and eighth, while the lefty Mahoney made his first career appearance in the ninth.
Fuller and freshman third baseman Jon Testani (Monroe, Conn.) each posted three hits for Connecticut, while Mazzilli totaled three RBI and Fuller three runs. For UMass, sophomore DH Rob McLam went 3-4 with two runs scored.
The Huskies are back in action tomorrow with a 3:00 pm game at Boston College, before returning to BIG EAST play at Pittsburgh over the weekend.