PHILADELPHIA - The Penn baseball team takes on Saint Joseph's, Wednesday at 3 p.m. at Meiklejohn Stadium, serving as the visitors in their home field.
The Quakers will be batting first on Wednesday as the Hawks will be considered the home team in the game. The contest is also the opening game for both teams in the Liberty Bell Classic. Penn comes into the game with an 8-9 overall record in their final contest before Ivy League season gets underway. Saint Joseph's is 6-11 this season, having won four of its last five games.
Penn has beaten the Hawks in each of their last three meetings. The two Big 5 rivals didn't play a season ago, but met twice in 2008 and once in 2007. The Quakers last two Liberty Bell Classic wins have come against the Hawks. In 2008 the teams played a doubleheader, with the Red and Blue winning the first 6-2 and then capturing the second 16-5.
Following The Action
Fans of the Quakers can follow all of the action by live stats (click here) or listen to a free broadcast provided by Saint Joseph's radio (click here).
Last Time Out:
On Saturday and Sunday, Penn lost three straight to Lafayette before taking the series finale with a 14-3 drubbing. The first three games of the weekend were all close as the Leopards won, 2-1, 6-4 and 9-8. In the first two games Penn had 13 hits, but left 15 runners on base in dropping a pair of close contests. In the Sunday opener it was defensive miscues which proved to be the difference, as six errors accounted for seven unearned runs. In the final game the Quakers showed what they are capable of, as they scored 14 runs on 14 hits and committed just one error. Starter Chris McNulty went the distance, allowing just one earned run in getting the victory.
Scouting The Hawks
Saint Joseph's has taken part in two of the highest scoring games of the year, losing to New Mexico 33-1 on March 6 and then defeating the Lobos 35-16 two days later. The team started 1-8 on the road but has rebounded back north with a 5-3 mark.
Hitting: The Hawks have three players hitting over .300 this season. Dewey Oriente (.415), David Valesente (.391) and Kevin Taylor (.358) lead the Saint Joseph's attack. Oriente leads the team in hits (27) and runs (14) and on base percentage (.452). Valesente has 25 hits and is tied for the team lead with five doubles. He also has scored 12 times and had 12 RBI. Taylor has provided the power with team-highs of three home runs and 14 RBI.
Pitching: Saint Joseph's starters have yet to record a victory this season, as Hawks relievers have been responsible for all six victories. Reliever Quentin Farr has three wins this season in 12.2 innings of relief. He has 3.55 ERA he has 12 strikeouts to seven walks. Bryan Penalo has appeared in seven games and leads the team with a 1.17 ERA in 7.2 innings of work. The junior has struck out 13 batters and walked just four.
We're Going Streaking
Sophomore Derek Vigoa has a hit in each of his last eight contests and has a hit in 15 of 16 games this season. The only game in which he didn't get a hit, he went 0-1 as a pinch hitter. Junior Dan Williams has the team's longest hit streak this season, getting hits in nine straight games earlier this year.
Sophomore lefthander Chris McNulty threw the third complete game of his career in a 14-3 win over Lafayette on Sunday. He is 2-1 on the season with a 2.84 ERA and allowed just eight earned runs in 25.1 innings of work. McNulty has also struck out 18 batters while walking just three, averaging just 1.07 walks per nine innings.
Walk This Way
Junior Mike Mariano leads the team with a .575 on base percentage this season and has a walk in each of his last nine games. Last week the designated hitter/catcher walked five times while striking out just twice. On the week he batted .400 with four hits, while scoring five times.
Steve Gable made the most of his start against Lafayette on Sunday, as he went 3-for-4 with three RBI. The second baseman also scored once and stole a pair of bases in the 14-3 win.
Production From All Around
Penn has seven different players with at least ten RBI. Freshman Spencer Branigan leads the team with 15 RBI, while six players have ten or 11 RBI.
Icing The Game
Since returning from Florida the late inning duo of Reid Terry and Trey Jennings haven't given up an earned run. The two have combined to pitcher 12.1 innings, allowing eight hits while striking out 11 and walking four.