Quinnipiac baseball wins game one, clobbers Iona 24-10


Daniel Passapera

Quinnipiac baseball’s 24 runs in Friday’s win are the most its scored in a game since March 31, 2018.

Benjamin Yeargin, Associate Sports Editor

HAMDEN, Conn. — Quinnipiac baseball put up a football-level score, battering the Iona Gaels 24-10 Friday afternoon to extend its home winning streak to four.

The 24 runs the Bobcats scored is the most it’s put up in a game since March 31, 2018, and it all started in the first inning.

The Bobcats pounced on the Gaels in the first inning. Senior outfielder Anthony Donofrio received a fastball from Iona right-handed pitcher Michael Lorenzetti, whose six-foot-nine frame makes him the tallest pitcher in the conference, and knocked it out of the park for the 1-0 lead.

Throughout the afternoon, both teams used a total of 12 pitchers, but it wasn’t a problem for Donofrio.

“Adapting to new pitchers is our job as hitters, so that’s what we’re going to do,” Donofrio said.

Quinnipiac wasn’t done as graduate student infielder Kyle Maves tripled in the right-center gap, but Mueller was tagged out at home. Maves decided to get that run on his own terms.

While Lorenzetti was in the midst of his wind-up to junior catcher/outfielder Keegan O’Connor, Maves bolted down the line, warned O’Connor he was coming, and slid into home plate safely while the pitch sailed over junior catcher Chris Mariani’s glove to add the second Bobcat run of the inning.

In the second inning, Mueller hit a three-run homer, his fifth of the season, to help put Quinnipiac up 8-0 at the end of the second. Mueller also tallied five hits in his six total at-bats in the game, a phenomenal .833 batting average on the day.

“Look for a pitch and get it,” Mueller said. “It’s a lot easier to hit 2-0 than 0-2, that’s been my approach this year and it’s working so far.”

Despite getting outscored by two touchdowns, Iona senior utilityman Jake Field had a fantastic day. The Deptford, New Jersey, native holds the third-highest average in the MAAC at .377, and his 3-6 Friday with two homers and a double proves why he’s one of the conference’s best. Field mashed a three-run dinger in the top of the third to cut the Bobcats lead to 8-4.

Quinnipiac responded in the bottom of the fourth inning with four runs of their own. RBI singles from redshirt junior designated hitter Sean Swenson and senior infielder McGwire Tuffy tacked on two Bobcat runs, whereas a fielder’s choice from senior utilityman Matt Tesoriero drove in two Quinnipiac runs to extend its lead to 12-4.

Field homered for the second time in the fifth inning, driving the ball over the left-field fence to inch the Gaels closer, bringing the score to 12-5. Field also drove in the only two Iona runs in the top of the sixth, off of a two-run double.

Though Quinnipiac won by 14 runs, Delaney was still unhappy with the pitching. The absence of senior righty Jimmy Hagan, the normal Friday starter for Quinnipiac, forced Delaney to use only bullpen arms.

“We need guys to step up,” Delaney said. “The ‘pen overall pitching-wise, we just didn’t do a good job with that.”

A potent six-run bottom of the sixth featured two three-run homers off the bats of Tesoriero and Donofrio. Donofrio knocked his second no-doubt homer of the day in the sixth which extended his team lead in home runs to eight.

“We did a good job with approaches (and) eliminating pitches that aren’t in the zone,” head coach John Delaney said. “We did a good job not leaving the zone which allowed us to be productive offensively.”

Iona responded with its final runs in the bottom of the seventh coming off a three-run homer from Mariani to close the gap to 19-10 Quinnipiac.

The Bobcats scored the last of its runs in the bottom of the eighth, tallying five off of walks, singles and wild pitches. They won the game by a final of 24-10.

Quinnipiac still faces Iona twice more this weekend with the next game being on Saturday at 1 p.m.