Baseball Sweeps Saint Joseph's

Penn 6, Saint Joseph's 2 (Game One)

Penn 16, Saint Joseph's 5 (Game Two)

PHILADELPHIA – Penn used four home runs from four different players to sweep a doubleheader with Saint Joseph’s on Wednesday. For three of the players, it was their first homerun in a Penn uniform. For one, it was his first career hit.

In game one, Tom Grandieri and Steve Gable went deep in the fourth inning to extend what was a 3-0 Penn lead into a 6-0 lead. Those runs stood up as the Quakers went on to win, 6-2.

In the second game, Kyle Armeny connected for his fifth home run of the season – a two-run shot in the first inning. Jason D'Ambrosio pinch hit for him in the sixth inning and did the captain one better. D’Ambrosio launched a three-run homer to deep left-center to give Penn a 16-4 lead. The Quakers went on to win, 16-5.

For D’Ambrosio, a sophomore, the round-tripper was his first career hit. He had been 0-for-4 in his previous trips to the plate over his two seasons.

“Having my first hit at Penn be a homer is great,” he said after the game. “I finally got loose and was able to relax. Sometimes, when you pinch-hit in a situation like that, it helps to be free and swing away.”

After a scoreless first inning in game one, Penn took the lead with three runs in the bottom of the second – all of which came with two outs. Dan Williams started things by reaching on a hit-by-pitch. Michael Gatti followed with a single. Williams hustled all the way to third on the base hit and Gatti took second on the throw. A throwing error by the shortstop on a grounder by Steve Gable allowed both men to score. Freshman Adrian Lorenzo then tripled down the right-field line to score Gable.

The Red and Blue doubled their lead in the fourth inning thanks to the homers from Grandieri and Gable. With one out and no one on base, Grandieri lined a homer to right-center. Williams singled and two batters later, Gable stepped to the plate.

The sophomore second baseman has done just about everything for the Quakers in 2008 – except go yard. That changed with a drive to left that cleared the fence and resulted in the Quakers exploding out of the dugout to greet Gable.

The Hawks added two runs in the sixth and seventh innings on a sacrifice fly and a solo home run, but it was not enough for the comeback.

Jeremy Maas picked up his second win with two shutout innings. He did not allow a hit and struck out four.

Game two saw Penn score in five of its six innings at bat. The Quakers plated two run in each of the first three innings. After not scoring in the fourth, they added five runs in the fifth and sixth.

Penn scored in a myriad of ways. There were the two home runs by Armeny and D’Ambrosio. One run scored on an infield ground out. Two runs were walked home in the third inning. Two more runs scored in the fifth when a popup to shallow left field was dropped by the shortstop. All ten runs scored in the fifth and sixth innings came after two outs had been recorded in each inning.

Gable had an outstanding day, going 3-for-7 with 4 RBIS and 3 runs scored. He has now hit in 14 games in a row and his average sits at .457 – tops on the team.

Gatti was 3-for-6 with two runs and an RBI. He is now batting .350 – a full 100 points higher than his average in 2007 and well above his career average entering the season (.210). His play in centerfield since taking over the starting job has been stellar. In 25 chances, he has yet to commit an error and many of his grabs have been highlight reel material.

Another player who has silently gained steam is William Gordon. The sophomore third baseman was 4-for-8 against Saint Joseph’s with three runs scored and two RBIs. Over the 11-game homestand since returning from Florida, Gordon’s average has risen from .229 to .325. His two hits in game one today were both for extra bases – a double and a triple.

Penn is on the road this weekend, traveling to Dartmouth (4/5) and Harvard (4/6) for a pair of Ivy League Doubleheaders.