Baseball: FAU wins second game vs. Hofstra 10-5

Mark Gibson

The Owls continued where they left off Friday night as they defeated Hofstra University once again, 10-5 on Saturday, Feb. 19, in Boca Raton.

It was FAU who took the early lead this time as they scored four runs in the bottom of the first inning. The first two runs were scored on an RBI double by right-fielder Andy Mee.

The next score came on an error by Hofstra second baseman Bobby Gazzola when he overthrew his first baseman, allowing Mee to score. Following the Hofstra mishap, designated hitter Eddie Cassidy brought Nelson home on an RBI single. Mee was vital to the Owls as he finished the day 4 for 5 with two runs and three RBIs.

Starting on the mound for FAU was sophomore right-handed pitcher R.J. Alvarez, who had a shaky game pitching just five innings with four strikeouts, two walks and four runs allowed.

It was junior right-handed pitcher Paul Davis who recorded the win as he came in to relieve Alvarez in the sixth inning. Davis pitched three innings and finished with two strikeouts and one run allowed.

Hofstra quickly answered the Owls’ lead in the top of the second when Gazzola and first baseman Jared Hammer scored RBIs. FAU answered back, though, as Mee got another RBI to make the score 5-2. By the end of the sixth inning, Hofstra managed to tie the game at 5-5.

“In the middle innings we didn’t do a very good job,” said head coach John McCormack. “But Alvarez gained his composure and managed to keep zeros on the board for his last two innings.”

In the bottom of the seventh the Owls put on a show as they forced Hofstra to change pitchers four times throughout the inning. With the bases loaded, Cassidy scored an RBI double as his line drive to deep left field brought Mee and second baseman Raymond Church across the plate.

“We kept fighting up there and eventually we started getting those runs through,” said Cassidy. “This is college baseball. Anything can happen.”

With the bases still loaded, FAU third baseman Sean Bukovich was hit by Jeff Guthridge’s pitch, forcing Cassidy to cross the plate and making the score 8-5. But FAU still wasn’t done scoring as catcher Mike Albaladejo scored an RBI double with the bases still loaded, making the score 10-5.

With two outs and the bases loaded, Hofstra attempted to make a late game rally in the top of the ninth, but right-handed pitcher Mike Ruccio managed to strike out third baseman Joe Perez and seal the win for FAU.

FAU will complete its series with Hofstra on Sunday, Feb. 20, at 1:00 p.m. in Boca Raton, attempting to sweep its first series of the season.