Fighting Saints sweep NHTI in fall season opener

Fighting Saints sweep NHTI in fall season opener

College of St. Joseph's baseball team debuted their 2018-19 squad in impressive fashion on Sunday, Sept. 9, taking home 5-0 and 15-4 wins over New Hampshire Technical Institute (NHTI).

Junior transfer Justin Holmberg threw a complete seven innings to take the win on the mound for CSJ in game one. He threw 10 strikeouts and allowed just six hits. NHTI's James Cardello took the loss on the mound for the Lynx, throwing four strikeouts and giving up seven hits in 5.1 innings of play.

A single to right field by Mathew Santiago got CSJ on the board in the top of the second inning. His hit sent Benny Pena from second base to home for the Fighting Saints' first run of the new season. Both teams went scoreless over the next 3.5 innings.

CSJ freshman Tristen Ciarlo recorded a double for the first hit of the sixth inning. Returning senior Kyle Gould followed up with a double of his own, allowing Ciarlo to round the bases and give the Saints a 2-0 lead on NHTI. Sophomore returner Jeremy Johnson then notched CSJ's third double in a row to score Gould and increase CSJ's lead to three. Johnson scored on the next play off Pena's second hit of the game.

In the bottom of the inning, Holmberg stepped to the mound and tallied two strikeouts. The Lynx were unable to put a run on the board and respond to CSJ's big sixth inning. The Fighting Saints recorded their final run of the game when a ground out by sophomore Leonard Charles-Titus sent junior Jason Albert across home plate.

Ciarlo, Johnson, Albert each recorded a double in the 5-0 victory and Gould finished with two doubles and a RBI.

CSJ's scoring onslaught continued in game two of Sunday's doubleheader. The Saints built a 5-2 lead after the first inning of play, with the help of a three-run home run by Johnson. Gould and Albert each recorded a single and a RBI during the inning.

After a scoreless second frame by both squads, the Fighting Saints widened their advantage to 12-4 over the next two innings.Pena recorded a double and RBI in the fourth. Three more runs by CSJ and zero by NHTI led to the game being called after the fifth inning due to the 10-run rule in college baseball.

Johnson led the way at the plate with two hits, two runs and five RBI. Senior Teddy Mercado notched two hits, two RBI and a run. Santiago and William Leino each recorded one hit, one run and two RBI.

Leino, returning this year as a sophomore, earned the win for CSJ after throwing a complete game with five strikeouts. He allowed three hits and four runs over five innings. NHTI's Jason Taylor took the 15-4 loss on the mound after giving up six hits and eight runs in 2.1 innings pitched.

The Fighting Saints play next on Saturday, Sept. 15 in a doubleheader against Central Maine Community College in Auburn, Maine.