Baseball Comes Back to Down St. Bonaventure, 7-6
May 17, 2002
NORWICH, CT - The Colonials managed to come back against the St. Bonaventure Bonnies, 7-6, Friday evening at Dodd Memorial Stadium in Norwich, CT. Sophomore Jeff Fertitta (Baltimore, MD/Loyola Blakefield) scored on a wild pitch in the top of the 11th inning to give third-seeded GW their final run over the second-seeded Bonnies. The Colonials (39-19) advance to the winner's bracket final where they will meet top-seeded Richmond, a 5-3 winner of Temple earlier today, tomorrow at 12:30pm. The Bonnies (29-12) will face the winner of this evening's Temple-Xavier game tomorrow at 4:00pm.
Fertitta led off the 11th with a walk and advanced to third on a ground-rules double by freshman Anthony Raglani (Indiana, PA/Indiana). Kevin Niemczura then threw a pitch in the dirt that enabled Fertitta to score winning run.
Niemczura picked up the loss and falls to 2-3. Justin Orenduff, who pitched the final inning and two-thirds, earned the win to improve to 8-2.
George Washington jumped out to a 1-0 lead as senior Mike Bassett (Paramus, NJ/Paramus) led the inning off with a double to right field and scored on Raglani's two-out single to center. The lead held until the bottom half of the fourth when the Bonnies put two runs on the board. Mike Rapacioli and Dan Dennison opened the inning with back-to-back singles. Mike Tegeler then loaded the bases, reaching base on a fielder's choice. Damian Blakeley's ground out drove in Rapacioli to tie the score at 1-1. With Dennison on third and Craig King at the plate, St. Bonaventure head coach Larry Sudbrook called for the suicide squeeze. King missed the ball but George Washington catcher Joe Michalski (Ellicott City, MD/Mt. Hebron) couldn't handle the pitch and Dennison scored on the passed ball. The Bonnies plated another run in the bottom of the fifth as Kevin Ryan, who led off with a single, scored on Rapicioli's triple to right field. Fertitta then took matters into his own hands. With St. Bonaventure leading 3-1 in the top of the eighth, Fertitta doubled off the centerfield wall to score senior Matt Krimmel (Schnecksville, PA/Parkland). Tony Dokoupil's (Severna Park, MD/Severna Park) single to left to drive in Bassett tied the game at 3-3. Then in the top of the ninth, Fertitta stroked a two-run, two-out single to give the Colonials a 5-3 lead.
Colonials' closer Mike O'Connor came on in the ninth looking to earn his Atlantic 10-leading 10th save. However, the Bonnies would not be denied. A bloop single to left by Ryan scored Blakeley to make the score 5-4. Then Eric Wilson singled to right to drive in Shane Sudbrook and tie the game at 5-5. Krimmel's sacrifice fly scored senior Travis Crowder (Manassas, VA/Osbourn) in the top of the 10th to give George Washington a 6-5 lead. In the bottom of the 10th, Joey Tinsley, who had only been up six times all season, hit a two-out grounder to second. The ball scooted under the glove of junior Chris Barry (Orchard Park, NY/Canisius) to allow Dennison to score and tie the game at 6-6.
Wald, Bassett, Fertitta, and Raglani each had two hits for the Colonials. Fertitta also drove in three runs. Ryan was 3-for-5 and Rapacioli was 2-for-5 for the Bonnies.