Baseball Shuts Out UMBC, 5-0, On Two, Two-Run Homers
April 29, 2004
BALTIMORE, MD - The Colonials picked up their fifth-straight victory with a 5-0 shutout of UMBC. Six GW pitchers combined to blank the retrievers with starter Dennis Gramolini earning his sixth career victory. Anthony Smith and Tom Shanley each hit two-run homers for GW's 29th victory of the season.
The Colonials (29-14) out-hit UMBC (10-26) 11-7 as GW collected its fifth shutout of the year. GW's hit parade was led off by Ryan Roberson who knocked a ball through the left side. Anthony Smith then tied his teammate for the team lead in home runs by blasting the second pitch over the fence in right field. His two-run shot was blasted over 350 feet and cleared a forty foot wall to put the Colonials up 2-0 in the second. With two runners on and two outs in the bottom of the second inning, Anthony Raglani made a fantastic catch in right field to end the inning and keep the Retrievers off of the board. Raglani crashed into the wall and held onto the ball on a shot nailed to the 330 mark in right field.
The Colonials ran into some fielding trouble in the bottom of the fourth loading the bases on two infield errors and an infield hit. After an out, Jon Gossard drilled a ball to Roberson at third who was able to knock it down on a hop but not make a play. After Gramolini got the second out on his second strikeout, GW allowed the next two Retrievers to reach on errors one by Geoff Milsom and one by Tom Shanley. UMBC left the bases loaded when Matt Owens caught a line drive to end the Retrievers' best scoring chance.
In the top of the fifth inning, Shanley hit a broken-bat home run on the line to left center field. Shanley hit the ball so hard that he actually broke his aluminum bat. The ball came flying off of the bat and quickly reached its 40 foot cruising altitude before vanishing into the trees in left center field. It was Shanley's fourth home run of the year also drove in Matt Owens who had reached on a single through the right side. Shanley's smack put the Colonials up 4-0 after five innings.
The Colonials added an insurance run in the sixth when Geoff Milsom singled in Brad Rosenblat who had double on a difficult pop fly down the right field line. Rosenblat then scored from second on Milsom's single up the middle to give GW the 5-0 edge.
The Colonials threw six pitchers in the winning effort. Dennis Gramolini was strong in his first start since the end of the 2002 season. The senior threw 10 strikes in his first 11 pitches to start the game. Despite throwing only four innings as the starter, Gramolini was credited with the win as the Colonials intended to use more than three pitchers to get the staff some work in their single mid-week game. Gramolini allowed six hits over four innings without allowing a run while striking out two. With the win, Gramolini picked up his first decision of the year and improved his career record to 6-1 which at .857 puts him in sole position of second on GW's winning percentage list. Gramolini needs just one more appearance to make GW's all-time list and tie his teammate Avi Rasowsky who picked up his 50th appearance and a tie for 10th place by throwing a scoreless eighth.
The next five Colonials completed the shutout. Nate CasaGrande entered the game for GW in the fifth and struck out two of the three batters he faced throwing only one ball in 10 pitches. Koken pitched the sixth and gave up a double off the top of the wall to Bernie Zaworski. Dan Pfau pitched a scoreless eighth while striking out one. Rasowsky entered in the eighth for his and threw eight straight strikes before throwing a ball. His 10 pitch inning ended with a strikeout one of two he threw. Derrik Lutz closed out the ninth by striking out the final batter of the game.
GW will play at La Salle this weekend hoping to extend their hold on first place in the Atlantic 10 West. GW is currently 12-3 in conference and has won all five conference series so far. Gametracker will not be available for the series as La Salle does not have a phone line but stats and the stories should be posted shortly after the conclusion of the games on both days. The two teams play a doubleheader starting at noon on Saturday followed by a nine-inning game at noon on Sunday.