BROOKLYN, N.Y. (May 22, 2007) — St. John's starting pitcher Scott Barnes (7-2) allowed just one run on six hits in 7-2/3 innings of work as the No. 8 seed University of Connecticut baseball team dropped a 2-1 decision to the top-seeded Red Storm Tuesday evening in the first round of the BIG EAST Tournament from KeySpan Park.
Reliever Colin Lynch came on to pitch the final 1-1/3 innings to earn his 11th save of the season.
Husky freshman starting pitcher Robert Van Woert (Johnson City, N.Y.) was the tough luck loser despite an equally effective performance. Van Woert worked all eight innings and allowed just two runs on eight hits while striking out three.
St. John's (40-15) jumped out in front early as the Red Storm plated a run in the bottom of the first inning. Second baseman Sam Deluca reached on a two-out fielder's choice before stealing second to advance into scoring position. Third baseman Gil Zayas followed with an RBI double into left-center field to account for the run.
UConn (30-26) answered with a run in the top of the second inning to even the score at one run apiece. Junior third baseman Pat Mahoney (Des Moines, Iowa) singled up the middle with one out to start the rally. After the Red Storm retired the next Husky, Mahoney swiped second base and came around to score on the following play as senior right fielder Josh Farkes (Boston, Mass.) delivered an RBI single into right field.
After four scoreless innings, the Red Storm broke the tie with a run in the bottom of the seventh inning on a two-out RBI from first baseman Ryan Mahoney. Center fielder Chris Anninos opened the inning with a single up the middle before moving to second on a sacrifice bunt from right fielder Anthony Smith. Anninos next took third on a fly out to right field off the bat of catcher Brendan Monaghan. On the following play, Mahoney laced a grounder down the right field line that was corralled by a diving Matt Untiet (Berlin Conn.). By the time Untiet had recovered and made his way towards first base, Mahoney had reached first base safely, allowing Anninos to score easily from third.
Individually, Mahoney paced the Huskies at the plate with a 2-for-3 showing with two stolen bases and a run scored.
UConn returns to the diamond Wednesday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. to face fourth-seeded Pittsburgh in the loser's bracket of the tournament. Earlier in the day, the Panthers fell, 2-1, to No. 5 seed South Florida. Because of the unbalanced schedule in the BIG EAST, the Huskies did not face Pittsburgh this season. In the last meeting between the two, UConn took two of three from the Panthers last season in Pittsburgh.