Baseball Hits Hot Streak, Winning Four of Five
By Colin Richey
Last Friday, Canisius held onto their lead despite a valiant comeback attempt by Quinnipiac to secure a 7-6 win.
The Griffins went two for three at home against Quinnipiac, moving into second place in the MAAC standings with a 9-3 conference record. Canisius also won both matchups against St. Bonaventure this week to improve their overall record on the season.
After being down 1-0 in the bottom of the third inning, the Griffs scored at least one run in five straight innings, taking a 7-2 lead going into the final two innings.
Junior Max Grant got on base in all five plate appearances, including a solo home run to open the scoring for Canisius. Senior Brennan Chisholm also hit a solo home run, before sophomore Josh Niles recorded an RBI single and graduate Kyle Kush generated an RBI double to take a 5-2 lead.
Graduate Dylan Vincent hit a two run homer in the seventh inning, giving the Griffs a five run lead heading into the eighth inning. Quinnipiac generated a comeback, plating their first six batters in the ninth inning to cut the score to 7-5.
An RBI single suddenly made it a one run game, but the team ultimately fell just short of the comeback. Junior pitcher Matt Duffy started for Canisius, striking out 11 batters through six innings, improving his starting record to 4-0 on the season against MAAC opponents.
The next matchup between Canisius and Quinnipiac on Saturday was less of a nail-biter. The Griffs stormed out to an early 6-0 lead in the first inning, and were up 9-0 by the end of the third.
The final score was 15-9, with the Griffs securing another run in the fourth and five runs in the sixth.
Overall, Canisius recorded 17 hits while senior pitcher Chris Pouliot posted a career-high 11 strikeouts. Junior Ty Wevers was 3-for-5 at the plate with four RBI (both season highs), while sophomore Jackson Strong hit his seventh home run of the season (tied for the team-high) and batted in a pair of runs.
Despite their momentum, the Griffs couldn’t complete the three-game sweep, falling to the Bobcats 10-8 on Sunday. Caisus initially had a 3-2 lead after two innings, thanks to a home run from Strong and an RBI from senior Kenny Dodson.
A grand slam from Quinnipiac catcher Keegan O’Connor opened the scoring floodgates for the Bobcats, registering seven runs in the fourth inning, with ten batters being sent to the plate.
Down 9-3, the Griffs fought back, recording three runs in the fourth, a run in the seventh, and a run in the ninth, but Quinnipiac was able to hold onto the win with a run of their own in the ninth to secure the 10-8 victory.
Canisius hit a home run in all three games of a series for the second time this season, first doing so against Iona earlier this year. Strong extended his hitting streak to six games, during which he had driven in seven runs and connected on five extra-base hits.
Canisius swept St. Bonaventure in a double-header on Tuesday, winning 9-7 and 3-2. After initially being down 1-0 to Bonnies, the Griffs responded with a four run inning, highlighted by a double steal.
After more back and forth between the teams, Canisius eventually secured the lead for good in the bottom of the fourth, plating three more runs to take a 7-5 lead. A two run sixth inning would improve their lead to four runs, which would be cut in half thanks to a two run seventh inning from St. Bonaventure.
In Game 2, Canisius was off to an early 2-0 lead thanks to Chrisholm and Strong using an RBI single and sacrifice fly to secure two runs in the first inning. St. Bonaventure quickly tied the game with a two run hit in the second inning.
Over the course of the next five innings, only one run would be scored, and it gave Canisius the 3-2 victory. Dodson was walked to load the bases before sophomore Cole Sebastian was also walked, allowing sophomore Trent Rumley to reach home and give the Griffis the lead.
Canisius stole eight bases in Game 1 and five in Game 2, while also pitching a one-hitter in the second contest to improve their overall record to 17-18 on the season.
Next up on the Griffs’ schedule is Saint Peter’s, who they will play this weekend in a three game series at the Demske Sports Complex, starting with a 3:00 PM contest this Friday.