Quinnipiac baseball blanks Yale 1-0


Peyton McKenzie

Quinnipiac baseball beat Yale for the first time since 2019.

Zack Hochberg, Staff Writer

NEW HAVEN, Conn – Despite using six pitchers, the Quinnipiac baseball team shut out the Yale Bulldogs 1-0 Wednesday afternoon for its sixth win of the season. 

The Bobcats made noise on offense early, getting runners on base in both the first and second innings. Yale head coach Brian Hamm was forced to pull freshman starting pitcher Ethan Lewis after just 1.1 innings of work. 

After Lewis exited the game, Bobcats senior infielder McGwire Tuffy drove in the first and only run of the ballgame, grounding out to second to bring home freshman outfielder Brian Heitzman from third. 

Similar to his opponent, Quinnipiac head coach John Delaney also made the decision to remove his starter after one inning. Freshman pitcher Andrew Rubayo worked through the second, but found himself in some trouble in the third with runners on second and third, but was able to get out of the jam. 

With Rubayo getting in trouble in the previous inning, Delaney made the move to sophomore pitchers Mason Ulsh in the fourth and then Ryan Hutchinson in the fifth. Although Ulsh got through his inning easily, Hutchinson found himself battling with bases loaded and only one out. However, Bulldogs sophomore first baseman Colton Shaw grounded out up the middle, which allowed the Bobcats to turn two and escape with the lead. 

Yale continued to get runners on base, but couldn’t push one over the plate in the sixth, as Quinnipiac turned to its fifth pitcher of the afternoon. 

The hosts’ offense remained active in the top of the seventh, but once again, the Bobcats turned a double-play to miraculously get out of the inning unscathed. Bulldogs senior outfielder AJ Gaich tried to bunt home the runner, but ended up popping the pitch into the air which was corralled by Quinnipiac freshman pitcher Matt Alduino who ran over to third to complete the double-play. 

“That was a turning point in the game,” Delaney said. “You got a guy on third base with the middle of the order coming up, and the fact that we were able to get out of that situation was big.”. 

Freshman pitcher Mike Poncini came in the eighth, the Bobcats’ sixth pitcher of the afternoon. Poncini completed the six-out save to snap Quinnipiac’s three-game losing streak after it was swept by St. John’s last weekend. 

“We’ve been in a lot of tight games over the course of this season,” Delaney said. “The St. John’s series was a little bit rough … We just didn’t play our game but we’ve played tight series all season, and playing a tight game and coming out on top is huge for the confidence level going into the weekend.”

The Bobcats shutout was their second of the season, their most since 2019. An ode to a new found confidence in both the pitching staff and defense.

“They faced a lot of challenges today,” Delaney said. “I think six out of the nine innings we ended up letting the leadoff guy on base, but obviously what we did a great job of today was managing that.”

Quinnipiac returns to action on March 24 when it begins MAAC play against Rider in Lawrenceville, New Jersey.