Late comeback from St. Rose proves too much for New Haven

Chris Elwell

The New Haven baseball team started off their final home series of the season against The College of St. Rose with an 8-6 loss. A four run top of the seventh inning for St. Rose gave them the lead and they never looked back.

Taking the mound for New Haven on Saturday was Brian Pazulski. Pazulski was in complete control of the game in the early innings, not allowing a hit through the first three innings. He would finish off his outing after six strong innings, allowing three runs and tallying seven strikeouts. Pazulski was able to work around baserunners in the middle innings, keeping the scoring to a minimum.

The Chargers were able to get on the board early with an RBI groundout by Andrew Cain to take a 1-0 lead. New Haven looked poised for a big inning to start the game after a walk by right fielder Tyler Wells and a single by second baseman Noah Budzik. Following Budzik was center fielder Robert Taylor who was able to reach on an error, in which Wells was thrown out at home trying to score. Cain then followed with a groundout to score Budzik and give New Haven an early lead.

New Haven’s lead would stay at one until the top of the fourth, when St. Rose was able to bring two runners across to give them a one run lead. After a strikeout to start the inning, designated hitter Nathan Toms was able to start the inning with a single to left field. After a hit by pitch, center fielder Zephaniah Vaughn hit into a fielder’s choice, setting up a first and third situation with two outs. Following a walk, second baseman Vince Venditti put St. Rose on the board with a two-run single to right field, scoring Toms and Vaughn. Pazulski was able to get a fly out to left field to end the inning, but the damage had already been done.

New Haven took the lead right back in the fourth, however, plating three runs to take a 4-2 lead. Left fielder Andrew Cain got the inning started with a walk, bringing first baseman Andrew Bianco to the plate. On the first pitch of the at-bat, he drilled a two-run home run to left field to give New Haven back their one run lead. Shortstop Kenneth Franquiz reached on a throwing error by shortstop Jared Reed, and was able to advance to third after a single by catcher Aaron Soucy, setting up a great scoring chance with runners on first and third with no one out. Third baseman Hunter Boag then grounded into a double play allowing Franquiz to score, giving the Chargers a 4-2 lead.

Pazulski was able to end the top of the fifth quietly, bringing up Budzik to lead off the bottom of the inning. Budzik lined a single to left field to start off the inning in hopes to try to increase their lead. Taylor would follow him with a fielder’s choice. With two outs in the inning, Bianco continued his strong day at the plate with an RBI double to right center field, scoring Taylor to make it a three run game. Kenneth Franquiz was able to follow him with an RBI single of his own to score Bianco and give New Haven a 6-2 lead.

St. Rose was able to get one run back in the top of the sixth to cut their deficit to three. With one out in the inning, Vaughn hit a double down the left field line to give them a prime scoring opportunity. Right fielder Josh Myers was able to plate Vaughn with a single to right field to make it a 6-3 game. Pazulski was able to work around another error to get the final two outs of the inning to keep it a three run game to finish his outing.

Coming in relief of Pazulski was senior Gary Costello. It was a rough day for Costello who gave up a three-run home run to Toms to tie the game at six. The inning started off with a walk to first baseman Jack McDonald and a single by catcher Derek Haughey. Toms then came up and delivered the big blow of the game with a game-tying home run to left field. Costello would be taken out of the game without recording an out after hitting left fielder James Ward with a pitch.

Cameron Guarino would come on to pitch in relief of Costello in the seventh, allowing a single and a throwing error to set up another scoring chance for St. Rose with two runners in scoring position. After a pop out to Boag, Ward would come home after another wild pitch by Guarino to give St. Rose a 7-6 lead.

It would stay a one-run game until the top of the ninth when St. Rose would bring another run home to double their lead. Vaughn once again got the inning started with a walk, advancing to second after a sacrifice bunt by pinch hitter Patrick Henning. Vince Venditti then delivered his second RBI hit of the day with a single to center field to score Vaughn.

The middle of the lineup for New Haven was due up in the bottom of the ninth, but St. Rose sent them down in order to end the game and take the first game of the series. New Haven dropped to 20-17 (5-12 NE10) with the loss and the win brings St. Rose to 18-21 (10-7 NE10).