STORRS, Conn. -- The UConn baseball team scored in double-figures for the second-straight game to take a 10-8 victory over Cincinnati on Saturday afternoon at J.O. Christian Field. The contest was game two of a weekend series and clinched a conference weekend for the Huskies (31-20, 10-10 American Athletic Conference) over the Bearcats (15-34, 6-14).
The Huskies trailed after the first inning as they also did in game one of the series, but scored five runs in the third and four in the fifth to build a lead they would not relent. Cincinnati rallied with four runs after the seventh inning before Patrick Ruotolo (Peabody, Mass.) struck out a pair in the ninth to seal his sixth save of the year.
At the dish, UConn pounded out 12 hits on the day, including two home runs, to record its 14th game of at least 10 runs (five in conference). Vinny Siena (Woodbridge, Conn.) homered and drove in a pair and Joe DeRoche-Duffin (Santa Ana, Calif.) also went deep for the second-straight day. Bobby Melley (Barnstable, Mass.) went 2-for-5 with a double and two RBIs, while Max McDowell (North Huntingdon, Pa.) also had two hits and drove in a pair.
Anthony Kay (Stony Brook, N.Y.) got the start on the mound and lasted five innings, allowing four runs on five hits with four walks and six strikeouts. He was opposed by Andrew Zellner who surrendered nine runs (seven earned) in 4.1 innings, allowing eight hits and six walks with five strikeouts.
Cincinnati got on the board in the first, taking a 2-0 lead with a double steal of home and an RBI single. The Huskies responded with five runs in the third to jump ahead 5-2. Melley got the scoring started with a long RBI double before McDowell lofted a two-run single to left. The Huskies put up two more in the frame without the benefit of a hit, as Willy Yahn (Sharon, Conn.) was hit by a pitch and Bryan Daniello (Norwalk, Conn.) walked, both with the bases loaded.
After the Bearcats added single runs in both the fourth and fifth innings, the Huskies posted another crooked number with a four-spot in the bottom of the fifth. DeRoche-Duffin led off the frame with a mammoth home run to dead center field, before an RBI walk for Siena and RBI singles for Melley and Blake Davey (Newport Beach, Calif.) stretched the lead to 9-4.
UC was able to cut the lead to three with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh before Siena blasted a line drive home run to left to lead off the home half of the inning. The Bearcats cashed in two more to pull close in the ninth, but Ruotolo was able to strike out two of the game's final three batters and lock down the save.
Up next, UConn and Cincinnati conclude their weekend series tomorrow on Senior Day in Storrs. The Huskies will honor their six-member senior class prior to the contest.
Vinny Siena recorded his 24th multi-hit game and 16th multi-RBI game, both tops on the team
Siena became the first Husky with 50 or more RBIs in a year since LJ Mazzilli in 2013
The Huskies have six home runs in their last two games, most in a two-game stretch this season and also the most in any conference series
Joe DeRoche-Duffin homered in back-to-back games for the second time this season. He also went yard in consecutive contests on March 29 at Tulane and March 31 vs. Boston College