LIGHT AND MCGEE PACE MU TO DOUBLEHEADER SWEEP OF MOUNT
WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. - Junior Pat Light (Colts Neck, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) and sophomore Andrew McGee (Toms River, N.J./Toms River South) both threw complete games as the Monmouth University baseball team swept Mount St. Mary's in a Northeast Conference doubleheader, Friday afternoon. In game one's 4-3 win, Light worked all nine innings, surrendering eight hits and a pair of walks, which lead to three runs, while striking out nine for his sixth overall win and fourth NEC victory of the season. McGee went the distance for the third time this year in the Hawks' 2-0 victory in the nightcap. In the two-hit shutout, the second-year Hawk recorded a career-best eight strikeouts in seven innings for his fifth win.
In game one, Danny Avella (Matawan, N.J./Christian Brothers Academy) blasted his team-leading fifth home run of the season, a two-run shot, in the first inning, scoring Ed Martin (Hazlet, N.J./Raritan [Brookdale CC]), who reached on a fielding error, to give the Blue and White a 2-0 lead.
Nick Walker's RBI double in the third inning cut Monmouth's advantage to 2-1 but MU responded in the home half of the inning. Jake Gronsky (Danville, Pa./Danville Area) reached on an infield single and moved to second on Avella's groundout. Two batters later, Jon Guida (Martinsville, N.J./Bridgewater Raritan) singled up the middle, chasing in his sophomore classmate Gronsky to increase the Hawks' lead to 3-1.
Josh Winter's solo home run to begin the fourth inning brought the Mount within one, but the Hawks answered again the home half of the frame. Kyle Perry (Toms River, N.J./Toms River South) reached on a bunt and moved to second on Martin's fielder's choice. Jamie Rosenkranz (Oakhurst, N.J./Ocean Township) connected on a single through the left side, plating Perry, to regain a two-run lead, 4-2.
Winter's sacrifice fly in the eighth inning reduced MU's advantage to one, 4-3, but Light got the Mount in order to finish off his third complete game of the season.
Karl Lamont hurled a complete game of his own, allowing four runs on nine hits with four punch-outs in the loss.
In the third inning of the nightcap, Josh Boyd (Port Murray, N.J./West Morris Central) singled to right and moved to second on Perry's free pass. After Martin grounded out moving the runners up a base and Boyd was tagged out at home on Rosenkranz's fielder's choice, Gronsky was hit with a pitch to load the bases. Avella earned a walk, plating Perry for the first run of the game.
Avella was hit by a pitch to start the sixth inning and moved to second on Steve Wilgus' (Woolwich, N.J./Gloucester Catholic) pinch-hit sacrifice bunt. Following a wild pitch, Owen Stewart (Howell, N.J./St. Rose) connected on a sacrifice fly that was dropped by the right fielder, plating Avella, to give Monmouth a 2-0 lead.
Despite allowing a one-out walk, his only blunder of the game, McGee got the final three outs to secure his fourth NEC win of the season.
Scott Nickerson, who also worked a complete game, was tagged with the loss for the Mount. In six innings, the starter allowed one hit to the Hawks, but five walks and two hit batsmen plagued the freshman righty, who falls to 1-5 on the year.
Monmouth and Mount will conclude its Northeast Conference series on Saturday with a doubleheader. Due to the weather forecast, game one has been moved up to noon, while game two will begin approximately 30 minutes following the final out.