Baseball: WVU Sweeps UConn

By Steve Stone for MSNsportsNET.com
March 22, 2009

west virginia 7, uconn 4
j.o. christian field
storrs, conn.
West Virginia 0 0 0 1 2 0 2 1 1 7 11 1
UConn 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 8 3
Stat Comparison
At-Bats 40 32
RBI 6 4
Walks 2 1
Strikeouts 7 6
Left On Base 11 3
Top WVU Players
Top Batter
Top Pitcher
Vince Belnome
2-4, 3 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB
Billy Gross
9.0 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 4 R, 1 BB, 6 K

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Two run-scoring doubles by catcher Tobias Streich led the West Virginia University baseball team to a 7-4 victory over Connecticut on Sunday afternoon at J.O. Christian Field in Storrs, Conn.

Streich, a Johnsonburg, Pa., resident, hit a key two-RBI double to left center in the seventh inning to give the Mountaineers (15-5, 3-0) a 5-4 lead. The sophomore also put WVU on the board in the fourth inning with a run-scoring double to center field to plate Vince Belnome.

Starter Billy Gross (2-2) had another strong start, earning the win after pitching his second complete game of the season. Gross went nine innings and gave up four runs on eight hits with six strikeouts. His only blemish on the afternoon occurred in the fourth inning when he allowed four runs to the Huskies (7-10, 0-3), the only inning in which they managed to cross the plate.

Senior left-hander Dennis Accomando (0-1) took the loss for UConn after giving up the go-ahead run to Streich in the seventh.

Streich led the Mountaineer offense with a 2-for-4 peformance and three RBIs. Dan DiBartolomeo had another solid effort at the plate, going 2-for-5 with an insurance RBI in the ninth inning. Belnome continued his torrid pace with a 2-for-4 effort and an RBI.

WVU continued to be the aggressor, scoring first in the top of the fourth. After Belnome reached first base on a throwing error by third baseman Nick Ahmed, Streich followed with an RBI double to center field to give the Mountaineers an early 1-0 lead.

UConn responded in the bottom half with four runs. Mike Olt started the scoring with an RBI single through the left side, and Peter Fatse followed with a three-run home run to give the Huskies a 4-1 advantage.

The Mountaineers came back with two runs in the fifth, highlighted by Austin Markel’s RBI single up the middle to plate Justin Parks. Markel was also involved in WVU’s lone run in the eighth inning, reaching base on an error by first baseman Mike Nemeth that scored Joe Agreste.

After Belnome started the ninth with a walk, and was advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Streich, DiBartolomeo came through with an RBI single down the right field line to mark the final score at 7-4.

WVU’s victory marks its second consecutive three-game sweep over the Huskies. In 2008, the Mountaineers defeated UConn by scores of 10-1, 12-11 and 17-3 at Hawley Field.

The Mountaineers return with a one-game series against Southeastern Conference opponent Kentucky on Tuesday, March 24, at Appalachian Power Park in Charleston, W.Va. First pitch is set for 6:05 p.m. as part of the Mountaineer Diamond Classic.