SALISBURY, Md. – The No. 17 Salisbury University baseball team will take on Marymount (Va.) University during the first day of the 2016 Capital Athletic Conference baseball tournament championship weekend at Frostburg State University. The first pitch for the matchup is set for 4 p.m., on Thursday, April 21.
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How we got here
The third-seeded Sea Gulls hosted fourth-seeded Wesley College in a first-round contest at the SU Baseball Field on Tuesday, which the Sea Gulls won 11-3. Junior Pete Grasso pitched 5 1/3 innings, while allowing only two runs and striking out seven in the victory, while benefiting from eight Salisbury runs in the first three innings. Junior Tom LaBriola broke the game open with a three-run double in the second inning, as he led the team with three RBI in the game.
How they got here
Marymount earned the tournament's No. 2 seed with a 12-6 record in conference play during the regular season, before hosting and defeating fifth-seeded Christopher Newport University in the first round. Lorenzo Calderon and Brandon Savage both drove in three runs for the Saints, combining for five hits in the game. A pair of four-run innings in the fourth and sixth allowed Marymount to build their lead for an eventual 11-3 victory. Sean O'Connell earned the win in 5 1/3 innings of two-run baseball.
Last time we met
The Sea Gulls and Saints last met in the regular season on April 6 at the SU Baseball Field. Grasso led the Sea Gulls to a 4-1 win, allowing only the one run and three hits in 6 1/3 innings on the mound. He also led the offense with two RBI to a two-run double in the first inning. The win allowed the teams to split their two-game season series.
Marymount enters Thursday's game with the best earned-run average in the CAC of 3.92, led by Collin Bazemore's 2.75 ERA. The offense is led by Savage and Luke Tyree, who are hitting .341 and .339, respectively, while Stephen Berczek has knocked in a team-high 35 RBI. The Saints boast the third-most steals in the conference, with 80 on the season, as well, with Calderon tallying 24.
Something's got to give
The Sea Gulls will challenge Marymount's league-leading ERA with the CAC's best offense, as Salisbury boasts a .350 team batting average to lead the conference. The Gulls' offense has been a driving force all season, also leading the league with 291 RBI and ranking second with 35 home runs. Meanwhile, the Saints have given up a league-low 133 earned runs, while only allowing 303 hits, ranking second in the conference.
Since both teams won their first-round games, despite the outcome of Thursday's matchup, both the Sea Gulls and the Saints will move on to the next day of the championship weekend on Friday, April 22. The matchups that day are dependent on the results for all three of Thursday's game and are to be announced. Log on to www.suseagulls.com for more information, as it becomes available.