NEW HAVEN, Conn. (May 11, 2018) -- Felician University kept to its winning ways on Friday during day 2 of the 2018 Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Baseball Championship, as the Golden Falcons (South #1 Seed) defeated Wilmington University (South #2) in the day's first game, 6-1, to reach Saturday's Championship Final at Municipal Stadium in Waterbury, Conn.
The Golden Falcons will enter Saturday needing to win just one game to capture the 2018 crown, and Felician will once again take on WilmU, as the Wildcats regrouped for an 11-4 triumph in a elimination later on Friday afternoon against Post University (North #1). The Wildcats, though, will have to win twice on Saturday to hoist championship hardware.
GAME 4: FELICIAN 6, WILMINGTON 1 l Boxscore
Rob Naughton turned in a fantastic start on Friday, as he pitched a complete-game, six-hitter with seven strikeouts and no walks to lead Felician to the five-run win. Naughton looked a little shaky over the first two innings, including yielding a first-inning run, but he settled into a rhythm over the next couple innings to set up the nine-inning effort. He threw 107 pitches and faced just 31 batters.
Felician scored the final six runs of the game to pull off the come-from-behind victory. L.T. Struble and Mike Martone each collected two hits and a double. Bruce Strickland knocked in a pair of runs, while Martone came around to score twice. Matt Diesel drove in Felician's first run of the game with two outs in the bottom of the third to knot the score at 1-1, as his base hit brought in Struble, who doubled with two outs just before the CACC Player of the Year stepped to the dish.
Kendall Small went 2-for-4 with an RBI, as he drove in Max Carney in the top of the first to give the Wildcats the early 1-0 lead.
WilmU starting pitcher Sean Deely was strong over the first two innings, but hit some trouble over the next several innings and was pulled after 5.1 with five runs allowed (3 earned) with seven hits, two strikeouts and a walk.
GAME 5: WILMINGTON 11, POST 4 l Boxscore
Wilmington's bats came alive in the day's second game, as the Wildcats pounded out 11 runs on 13 hits. Dakota Graham and Small each stroked three hits. Small smacked a triple, while Nick Grant blasted a pair of triples himself and drove in a team-high three runs. Carney added two hits, a double and a pair of runs scored. Brooks Ryan smashed a home run down the right-field line to log the first homer in the tournament at Municipal Stadium over the past two seasons.
Zach Rumford got the win on the mound for Wilmington, as he worked 6.1 innings and allowed four runs on nine hits with two strikeouts and a pair of walks. Justin Mears pitched two hitless innings of relief to keep the Post lineup at bay.
The Wildcats took a 6-4 lead into the top of the ninth, but plated five insurance runs in the frame to put the game out of reach.
Connor Kolich, Rosario Missiti and Mike Lisinicchia each collected two hits for Post in the setback. Matt Goehrig got the start on the mound and was tagged with the loss by yielding six runs (4 ER) on seven hits over five innings. He struck out six and walked two.
ABOUT THE CACC
The Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference is an NCAA Division II Conference composed of 14 institutions in Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The member institutions are Bloomfield College, Caldwell University, Chestnut Hill College, Concordia (N.Y.) College, Dominican (N.Y.) College, Felician University, Georgian Court University, Goldey-Beacom College, Holy Family University, Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University), Nyack College, Post University of Waterbury, University of the Sciences, and Wilmington University.