TEANECK, N.J. - The Monmouth University baseball team used a six-run eighth to collect a 9-3 victory at Fairleigh Dickinson, Friday afternoon in Northeast Conference play. With the win, the Hawks improve to 20-11-1 on the season and 5-3 in the NEC.
FDU grabbed a 2-0 advantage in the bottom of the third inning, capitalizing on a tandem of two-baggers. Designated hitter Jeff Vincent slipped a one-out double inside third base and down the line then scored on a base knock through the left side courtesy of first baseman Vincente-Alexander Medina. Junior outfielder John Paganotti delivered a two-out double off the right field fence to plate Medina.
In the top of the fifth frame, Monmouth tallied a trio of runs to jump ahead, 3-2, highlighted by a two-run single to right field by Andy Meyers (Stratford, N.J./Sterling). The following inning, Knights outfielder Chris Grabowski deposited a two-strike, two-out pitch into the left-centerfield gap to drive in the tying run.
Monmouth regained the lead, 4-3, in the eighth, on the strength of a solo shot to centerfield by Rick Niederhaus (Whitehouse Station, N.J./Hunterdon Central), his third of the season. The Hawks ultimately tallied six runs in the frame, with Mike Casale (Toms River, N.J./Toms River North) and Kyle Messineo (Cedar Grove, N.J./Cedar Grove) adding a two-run homers. Casale's round-tripper was his third of the year, while Messineo hit his team-leading fifth.
FDU starter John Meadus allowed five hits through six innings – including a pair of earned runs – in a no decision, while striking out five. Sophomore righty Ryan Hennessy took the loss, tossing 1.2 innings of relief.
Monmouth's Brad Brach (Freehold, N.J./Freehold Township) earned his third straight win to improve to 5-1 on the year. The junior, who threw a complete-game no-hitter in his last outing, worked seven innings, surrendering three runs on 11 hits, while striking out five. Freshman Kyle Breese (Monmouth Junction, N.J./South Brunswick) worked the final 2.0 innings for the Hawks, holding FDU scoreless and hitless.
Messineo, Meyers and Casale each had two hits and two RBI in the game, while Shawn Teters (Springdale, Ark./Springdale) and Chris Collazo (Wall, N.J./Wall) collected two hits apiece as well.
Monmouth and FDU return to action tomorrow afternoon with a doubleheader starting at noon.