Brown Sweeps Baseball for Ivy League Title

Game 1 Box Score
Game 2 Box Score

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – An Ivy League championship eluded the University of Pennsylvania baseball team on Saturday afternoon, as the Quakerswere swept by Brown in Games 1 and 2 of the best-of-three Ivy League Championship Series at Murray Stadium. The Bears won Game 1, 1-0, scoring a run in the eighth inning. In the nightcap, Brown amassed 21 hits and scored in all but three innings, taking the game 20-6 to win their first Ivy League title.

Brown must now wait until May 28 to find out which regional it will be sent to for the NCAA Championship.

Game 1 was a pitchers' duel between Penn's Todd Roth (6-2) and Brown's Jeff Dietz (7-3). Both pitchers went the distance and did not allow an earned run. Dietz gave up just three hits and struck out 10. It was the first time the Quakers have been shut out since March 24. Roth, meanwhile,pitched his seventh consecutive complete game this season and pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth. Dietz had the upper hand in the game not only because he was the winning pitcher, but because he brought in the winning run in the eighth with a sacrifice fly.

Neither team threatened to score until the bottom of the sixth. Brown’s Ryan Murphy singled with one out, and Devin Thomas followed with a single to center. Murphy hesitated rounding second initially, but decided to go. Centerfielder Joey Boaen’s throw was on the money, but Murphy was called safe. With Thomas moving up to second on the throw, Penn (20-19) opted to intentionally walk Dietz to set up the force at every base. Roth fell behind Matt Nuzzo, but fought back and struck him out in the nine-pitch at bat. With two down, Roth bore down again and struck out Bryan Tews on a 3-2 curveball to get out of the jam unscathed.

Roth issued a leadoff walk to Steve Daniels in the eighth, but struck out Murphy for the first out of the frame. With Thomas at the plate, Daniels stole second,and on the throwthe ball deflected off shortstop William Gordon’s glove into right field, allowing Daniels to move to third. Roth intentionally walked Thomas to set up the force at second, butDietz lifted a popup down the right-field line that second basemen Steve Gable caught. Daniels tagged on the play and scored to give the Bearsthe 1-0 lead.

Kyle Armeny drew a leadoff walk to start the ninth for Penn, and was moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Boaen. Pinch-hitter Michael Gatti was then hit by a pitch to put the go-ahead run on base. Matt Toffaletti grounded out, advancing the runners 90 feet closer. However, with runners on second and third, Dietz closed out the game by striking out Alex Nwaka.

Brown (24-18) carried their momentum into Game 2, getting to Penn starter Jim Birmingham (4-2) for nine runs in 1 2/3 innings. The Bears were the away team in the nightcap and wasted no time getting on the scoreboard.

With one run already in and the bases loaded, Robert Papenhause gave the Bears a 5-0 lead with a grad slam that just got over the fence in right. Brown tacked on four runs in the second with another grand slam, this time by Thomas. Reid Terry relieved Birmingham and got the final out of the frame.

Andy Console entered in the third and allowed two runs that extended the Bears lead to 11-0. Penn finally got on the board in the third when Boaen singled in Jeff Cellucci with two outs to extend his hit streak to a team-best 14 games.

Console threw a scoreless fourth and fifth, but the Bears scored four more runs off Robbie Seymour in the sixth. Penn got things going in the sixth, as its first three batters reached base. Cellucci grounded into a fielder’s choice to score Toffaletti, thenGable followed with a double to left center that brought home Terry. Jarron Smith knocked in Cellucci with a base hit to right, which ended the day for Brown starter James Cramplin (5-2). Reliever Peter Moskal got William Gordon to hit into a fielder’s choice for the second out, but Gable scored on the play. Armeny capped off the Quakers’ big inning with an RBI double to left that made the score 15-6.

However, the Bears scored one run in the seventh and four more in the eighth to go up, 20-6. Senior Doug Brown got the last out of the eighth, and fellow senior Joe Thornton pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning.

Penn’s 20 wins this season were the most since 2003. Their 12 League victories were also the most since 2003.