PHILADELPHIA - Ryan Deitrich collected three doubles and Rick Brebner batted in a pair, but La Salle scored all of its run over the final five innings to recover from an early 3-0 deficit on its way to an 11-4 win on Wednesday afternoon at Meiklejohn Stadium.Ten pitchers saw action in the game for the Quakers, who walked nine as a team.
Stephen Silvestri received his first career start on Wednesday and worked a routine 1.1 innings. Battling around a lead-off walk in the first to Brendan Norton, Silvestri's defense picked him up with a 6-4-3 double play before he ended the side by striking out Jon Gyles.
Penn struck first in the bottom of the second as Deitrich's first double was mashed off the top of the batter's eye in center field. After La Salle starter Dominic Sgroi sat down two in a row, Austin Bossart made sure that the Quakers wouldn't come up empty with a RBI single to center field for a 1-0 lead.
After a scoreless third for the Explorers, the Penn offense was clicking again in the bottom of the inning, scoring twice more for a 3-0 edge. Greg Zebrack started it off with a two-out double to left and was brought home by a Brebner single to right. One batter later, Deitrich ripped a line drive that bounced directly on the third-base line, spraying up the chalk to plate Brebner.
La Salle began to comeback in the fifth inning, loading the bases before scoring off a hit batter and a walk, cutting the Penn lead to 3-2. Though the Red and Blue tried to stave off the Explorers with an unearned run in the bottom of the fifth to get the lead back to two at 4-2, La Salle's patient approach at the plate continued to pay dividends the rest of the way as Penn pitchers failed to consistently find the strike zone.
La Salle took the lead for good in the sixth inning as the first two batters of the inning reached on walks before moving up 90 feet off a sac bunt. After the third walk of the inning loaded the bases, Dan Klem tied the game at 4-4 with a single to center field. George Smith Jr. ended up with the game-winning RBI off a bloop fielder's choice to shallow center that scored Adam Kammler from third. La Salle would add one final run in the sixth before putting the game away with two runs in the eighth and three more in the ninth to pull away for the 11-4 win.
Mike McLeod gave up two hits and a run in this 1.2 inning appearance, but moved to 3-0 with the win. Ronnie Glenn (0-2) suffered the loss for Penn.
The Quakers make the short trip to Princeton this weekend for a critical four-game series against the Tigers. Doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday begin at 12 p.m. Penn's final non-conference contest of the regular season is on Tuesday night against St. Joseph's in the championship game of the Liberty Bell Classic. First pitch from Citizens Bank Park is at 7:30 p.m.
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