FAU Baseball: Nolan Schanuel’s two-run homer helps Owls take down UCF 5-3

The Owls claimed redemption for their blowout loss last week thanks to three home runs from three different batters.


Eston Parker III

FAU’s baseball team celebrating #12 sophomore first baseman Nolan Schanuel’s (center) go-ahead two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth inning.

Cameron Priester, Staff Writer

The FAU Owls baseball team (20-10, 6-3 C-USA) beat the University of Central Florida (UCF) Knights (18-11) 5-3 on Tuesday night in Boca Raton, Fla.

The victory puts the season series at one win apiece as the Owls fell to the Knights 13-1 in last Tuesday’s encounter in Orlando. 

“That was a really fun game to be a part of,” said head coach John McCormack. “When we went up there a week ago, things really didn’t go our way. Tonight, I thought the guys were really ready to play.”

Freshman right-hander Bryan Boully got the first start of his career and quickly allowed the Knights to take a 1-0 lead on an RBI single in the top of the first inning. 

“It was good to get [Boully] out there, I like him and think he has a future. We just have to make sure within the framework of winning baseball games [that] we’re getting him some experience,” McCormack said. 

In the bottom of the first, sophomore right-fielder Gabriel Rincones Jr. tied the score at one apiece with his ninth homer of the season.

Boully’s first career start only lasted an inning as redshirt sophomore left-hander Marc DeGusipe took the mound for the Owls in the top of the second. 

DeGusipe only lasted a single inning, with junior left-hander Evan Waterbor replacing him on the mound in the top of the third after allowing a run on a sac fly. 

At the top of the fifth, sophomore right-hander Dante Visconti was called out of the bullpen and allowed the Knights to extend their lead to 3-1 on a wild pitch before freshman left-hander Mac Martzolf subbed in after five batters.

Sophomore shortstop Armando Albert slimmed the Knights’ lead to 3-2 in the bottom of the fifth, hitting his third homer of the season. 

Redshirt sophomore right-hander Robert Wegielnik became the seventh pitcher to take the mound for FAU as he came out of the bullpen in the top of the eighth. 

The Owls’ bats finally came alive in the bottom of the eighth. Following Rincones Jr. reaching first on a walk, sophomore first baseman Nolan Schanuel hit a two-run homer followed by an RBI single from sophomore catcher Caleb Pendleton to take a 5-3 lead heading into the final inning.

“The bats came alive when we needed them to, but we need to work on recognizing in-game where we can drive in a simple run,” said McCormack.

In the top of the ninth, Wegielnik struck out three of the four batters he faced to retire the side and leave FAU with the victory.

When the Owls return to action, they will host a three-game conference series against the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers. The series will begin on Friday, April 5, and end on Sunday, April 7. All three games will be broadcast on C-USA TV.

Cameron Priester is a staff writer for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @PriesterCameron.