No. 1 Tampa needs extra innings to sweep Rollins College
WINTER PARK, Fla. -- Sweeping its road series, the No. 1 University of Tampa baseball team torched Rollins College in its Saturday doubleheader. The UT team took both extra-inning contests by final scores of 6-3 for the first game (10 innings) and capped off the series with a 12-8 win in the second matchup (eight innings).
The Spartans improve to 23-1 on the season with a pristine 6-0 tally in Sunshine State Conference matchups while the Tars fall to 12-11 (0-6 SSC).
Swift-swinging Stephen Dezzi continued his offensive barrage, ending the day with four hits, four RBI and three runs scored. Of his four hits, three were for extra bases and the junior ended the series with eight RBI, five hits, two doubles, two home runs and a triple to dismantle the Tars pitching staff.
Tampa began the scoring with none other than sophomore Dezzi plating a pair of runs with a two-bagger down the right field line. Rollins answered in the home half of the inning, scoring a run to cut the deficit 2-1 in favor of the Spartans.
UT added an insurance run in fourth, as Giovanny Alfonzo picked up an RBI double to put the score at 3-1.
The Tars knotted the score in the eighth as second-baseman Brett Flutie singled up the middle to plate two runs, tying the game 3-3.
Pinch hitter Chris Pagliarulo broke the tie in the 10th frame with a RBI base-hit. Catcher Nick Tindall padded the lead with two RBI to increase the Spartan lead, ending with a 6-3 final score.
Starter David Heintz threw seven innings, allowing one run off five hits while sending five batters down on strikes but did not factor into the decision despite a strong effort. Reliever Preston Packrall (3-0) was credited with the win, as the senior pitched the final three innings of play.
Rollins pitcher Eric Morse (1-1) surrendered three runs in the 10th inning to pick up the first loss of the Saturday twin-bill.
Game two of the doubleheader was a back-and-forth brawl that saw Rollins score an early four runs to begin the first inning. Tampa would score a run thanks to an Alfonzo RBI double, despite being on the wrong side of a 4-1 margin.
The Tars matched with another run as Brian Perlmutter singled through the right side to score the fifth run for Rollins.
The Spartans inched back into the contest as Tyler Ding and Michael Danner each picked up an RBI, pulling UT within two runs. An inning later, catcher Dalton Hughes roped a RBI double down the leftfield line. Second baseman Orlando Rivera would tie the game at 5-5 with a sacrifice fly.
Rollins would reclaim the lead as Christopher Corbett launched a solo home run, Tars leading the Spartans by a slim 7-5 score.
The battle continued in the fifth inning, as Danner singled up the middle to score Ding. Senior Zach Gawrych followed with a two RBI double down the leftfield line to score Tindall and Danner and give UT an 8-7 lead.
The Tars would capitalize on a wild pitch to force more extra innings and even the score at 8-8.
Junior Dezzi ricocheted a triple off of the centerfield fence to score a pair of runs in the top of the eighth, giving the Spartans the lead. Outfielder Danner would add an insurance run as the UT squad finished with a 12-8 win.
Junior Chase Sparkman (1-0) was credited with his first win of the season, pitching five innings in relief, limiting the Tars to four hits and a single unearned run. The lefty fanned four batters with no walks for the Spartan’s 23rd win of the season.