By: Jay Ashdown
The Canisius baseball team continued their long road-stand to start the season with their first sweep of the year, winning three consecutive games against the Charleston Southern Buccaneers.
The Griffs relied on all facets of the game in order to take all three games. In game one, the Griffs relied yet again on ace Matt Duffy, as he dominated the Buccaneers, going eight innings and facing 30 total batters. Duffy only yielded two runs on four hits, striking out nine before Brett Kochanski came in to get his first save of the season. Kochanski was solid in his appearance, only giving up one hit against four batters faced, while also recording a strikeout.
Max Grant went 4-for-5 with a pair of RBIs in game one, continuing his success at the plate. The opening frame of the game saw Canisius and Charleston Southern exchanging runs as the aforementioned Grant singled home Mike DeStefano. Charleston Southern tied it in the home half of the inning on a two-out RBI single by Ajay Sczepkowski.
Canisius broke through to take the lead again in the fifth inning when Dylan Vincent was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. An inning leader, the Griffs doubled their lead on a two-out RBI single by Chiarenza in the sixth.
DeStefano stretched the lead to three, reaching on a single in the eight that scored Grant. Charleston Southern's Connor Carter trimmed Canisius’s lead in the bottom half of the eighth with an RBI double, making it a 4–2 game, but it was not enough as the Griffs took game one.
The Griffs then won game two of the double-header in stunning fashion, erasing an 11-run deficit to win 15–12.
The Griffs got off to a horrendous start, going down 5–0 after the first, largely due to four costly errors. The Griffs yielded four more runs in the second and two more in the third, going down 11–0 early in what looked like it would be an ugly game for Canisius.
That’s why the games are played, though: it’s never over until the final out is recorded.
The Griffs chipped away, scoring two runs in the fourth and three runs in the fifth, cutting it to 11–5. An error in the bottom half of the fifth allowed the Buccaneers to add another run, making it 12–5 in an attempt to stop the Griffs momentum.
Unfortunately for them, the Griffs weren’t done.
The Griffs added another three runs in the sixth, and their total explosion happened in the seventh and final inning of the game, as the team scored seven runs to complete the comeback and take a 15–12 lead.
Junior Tom Peltier earned his first collegiate save for the Griffs, shutting the door late and sealing a monster win for Canisius.
After a successful double-header seeing Canisius take both games, they took that momentum into the third game, winning 8–6 and sweeping the Buccaneers.
Max Grant as well as Kyle Kush, Mike Steffan and Gibson Krzeminski each recorded multi-hit performances for Canisius in the third game, leading the way offensively.
Chris Pouliot earned the victory for the Griffs, pitching 3.2IP and allowing four earned runs. Freshman Peyton Consigli was credited with his first collegiate save, pitching three shutout innings of relief for the Griffs. Consigli was huge down the stretch for Canisius, as both teams were held scoreless from the 6th inning on.
With the sweep, Canisius is now 7-8 on the season, and they will take on North Carolina A&T next.