Baseball Drops Home Opener, 9-4, Versus Villanova

PHILADELPHIA – After playing its first eight games on the road to begin the 2015 season, the University of Pennsylvania opened its home schedule, facing Big 5 rival Villanova Wednesday afternoon, falling 9-4 at Meiklejohn Stadium.

With the game tied 1-1 through four innings, the Wildcats (7-11) broke the game open scoring seven runs on three hits, four walks and three Penn errors in the top of the fifth inning.

Penn (1-8) out-hit Villanova nine to seven in the game, despite the loss. The Quakers were led offensively by junior outfielder Gary Tesch, who was 2-for-4 on the afternoon, with a home run.

Junior Matt Greskoff, and seniors Austin Bossart and Mitch Montaldo, also each had two hits, with Greskoff and Bossart picking up RBIs. Bossart also recorded a stolen base, and threw out a Villanova baserunner behind the plate.

Serving as the designated hitter Wednesday, sophomore Tim Graul had Penn’s other RBI in the game, on a sacrifice fly in the eighth inning.

Starting on the mound for the Red and blue was sophomore right-handed pitcher Mitchell Hammonds (0-2), working 4.0 innings allowing four runs, while striking out six Wildcats batters. Villanova’s Mike Sgaramella (3-1) picked up his third win of the season, allowing two runs in 5.0 innings, while also striking out six.

Making his third appearance out of the bullpen this season, sophomore right-hander Nick Pedalino gave Penn2.0 innings of scoreless relief allowing just one hit, while striking out one. In 3.2 innings of work this season, Pedalino has allowed just two baserunners, and has struck out two batters.

Penn returns to action this weekend, beginning a four-game home stretch with Lafayette, with a doubleheader Saturday and Sunday beginning at 12 p.m. at Meiklejohn Stadium. Please note that Saturday’s doubleheader was originally scheduled to be played at Lafayette, but was moved to Penn due to unplayable field conditions in Easton, Pa.

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