YORK, Pa. – The No. 16 Salisbury University baseball team is a step closer to its season-opening goal, having captured its third-straight Capital Athletic Conference championship, and 12th overall, with a 5-1 win over Christopher Newport University on Sunday afternoon.
At the beginning of the season, Head Coach Doug Fleetwood said that the team's goal was to get back to the College World Series. His team is a step closer to realizing that goal having earned an automatic qualification to the NCAA tournament with today's win.
Junior Dylan Anderson kept the Captains' offense at bay and freshman Pete Grasso worked the final 3 1/3 innings to pick up the conference-clinching win. Anderson went 5 2/3 innings and let up the lone Christopher Newport (23-15) run, having scattered six hits while striking out three. Grasso would start the contest at his customary spot at shortstop and then shift to the mound. The Wilmington, Del., native let up a single hit over the late innings.
The Captains would get on the board in the first when Curtis Pittman singled to bring in Tommy Vitaletti for the early lead.
Salisbury (27-7) would answer back in its half of the first when senior Johnny Schiotis singled home Grasso to tie the score.
The contest would remained tied through the middle innings until junior Bobby Sanzone belted his team-leading third home run of the season, a solo shot, to give the Sea Gulls the lead for good.
The Sea Gulls would add another run in the seventh to extend their lead to 3-1 when Grasso singled home senior Bill Root. In the eighth, Root would add two insurance runs with his first home run of the season, which plated junior Austin Barefoot, as well.
Salisbury would finish the contest strong, as Grasso would strikeout A.J. Nicely to clinch the victory.
Root and Schiotis led the Sea Gulls with two hits each, and Root led the way with a pair of RBIs.
The Sea Gulls will have a series of tune-up contests before the NCAA tournament, starting with a contest against Gallaudet University on Tuesday in the nation's capital. The first pitch of that contest is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.