Offensive surge leads Sea Gulls past Shoremen

Offensive surge leads Sea Gulls past Shoremen

SALISBURY, Md. – The No. 7 Salisbury University baseball team put its power bats on display on Tuesday afternoon, defeating Washington (Md.) College 22-11 at the SU Baseball Field.

The Sea Gull offense broke out for 21 hits, including nine for extra bases and four home runs.

Junior Tom LaBriola continued his hot streak to get the Gulls going in the first inning. After senior Alex Lipman singled up the middle to get a man on, LaBriola drove a 2-and-1 pitch down the left-field line and just inside the foul pole for his first home run of the season. LaBriola finished the day 4-for-4 with four runs and two RBI, giving him a .563 batting average so far this season.

The Shoremen responded with two-straight three-run innings in the second and third to take a 6-2 lead, but the Salisbury bottom half of the third would be the difference in the game, giving the Gulls a lead which they would not secede again.

After two quick outs to start the frame, Lipman walked, bringing junior Pete Grasso to the plate. Grasso belted the third pitch of the at-bat deep to dead-center field to cut the Washington lead to two, 6-4.

With a LaBriola single and walks by freshman Jay Perry and senior Tyler Hrycak, senior Jake Dmiterchik retook the lead for the Sea Gulls with one swing. In a pinch-hit at-bat, Dmiterchik connected on a no-doubt grand slam to left field to clear the bases.

Salisbury was not done, as junior Robbie Jones scored on a double by freshman Jack Barry after walking. With Barry on second, senior Kyle Goodwin came up and jumped on the first pitch for his first home run of the year, driving the shot over the right-field wall, giving the Gulls an 11-6 lead and completing a nine-run third with each run coming with two away. Goodwin, Grasso, and Dmiterchik all tied to lead the way with four RBI each in the game.

Freshman Caleb Johnson entered the game following the offensive outburst to pitch three innings of relief and earn his first collegiate win. He struck out one in the outing, while only allowing three hits.

The Shoremen got two back in the top of the fourth, but Hrycak singled to score LaBriola in the bottom half of the inning to add to the lead, before Salisbury broke out with another big inning in the sixth, scoring seven more.

Freshman Jack Decker pinch hit with a two-RBI single down the left-field line for his first career hit in the inning, while Grasso and Barry each drove in two runs, as well, in the frame. Barry finished with three runs batted in, to go with three hits in the game, tying Grasso and Goodwin for second on the team in hits for the game.

The Sea Gulls added two more runs in the seventh and one in the eighth to cap the win, while sophomores Andrew Kramer and Kyle Skilling combined for the final three innings on the mound.

The Sea Gulls return to the field in two days, hosting Johns Hopkins University on Thursday, March 3 at the SU Baseball Field, with first pitch set for 2:30 p.m.

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