(Flemington, N.J.) – The Dickinson baseball team opened the 2016 campaign with a sweep of the University of Scranton. The teams met at Diamond Nation in Flemington, N.J., on Saturday afternoon, with the Red Devils claiming the opener, 7-6, and the nightcap 11-6.
The Red Devils jumped on the board first in game one, scoring twice in the bottom of the second inning. Senior Phil Werner (Potomac, Md./St. Andrew's) drew a lead-off walk and moved to third on a wild pitch and a passed ball. He came in to score on a base-hit from Benn Parker (Newtown, Pa./Council Rock North).
Parker moved to third, courtesy of a balk and a stolen base. He scored off the bat of first-year Max Brown (Annapolis, Md./McDonogh School) for a 2-0 lead. The Royals got one back in the top of the third, using a double and a double-steal to put a run on the board.
Sophomore Robbie Thompson (Camp Hill, Pa./Camp Hill) launched a solo homerun in the fourth to stretch the lead to 3-1. Patrick O'Dell drew a walk in the fifth and scored for the second time on a sacrifice fly from Brian Healy. Zach Dignam singled and scored on an RBI single from Anthony Simone.
First-year Stephen Sakowicz (Park Ridge, Ill./Maine South) singled and came around on a two-run shot by senior Matt Primavera (Erdenheim, Pa./Chestnut Hill Academy) to put the Red Devils in front, 5-3, in the fifth.
O'Dell drew another walk and scored again in the seventh. The Devils answered with two unearned runs in the bottom half of the inning. Ryan Dolan (Plymouth Meeting, Pa./Germantown Academy) and scored on an error off the bat of Sankowicz. Sankowicz stole second and scored on a double by Thompson for a 7-4 advantage.
Scranton looked to rally as Healy hit a two-run homer in the ninth. The Devils closed the door for the final of 7-6.
Thompson went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and a run scored in the opener. Dolan added a single in first, going 2-for-4.Primavera drove in two runs and Sakowicz scored twice in his collegiate debut. Parker finished with two hits, an RBI and a run scored.
Senior Garrett Kurtz (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial) scattered four hits and recorded five strikeouts in a four-inning effort. Reid Collins (West Hartford, Conn./Kingswood Oxford) came on to earn the win, striking out three in two and two-thirds innings. Alex Gusikoff (Marlboro, Pa./Malvern Prep) closed out the game, earning the save with a two-inning effort.
The Red Devils won game two, 11-6, for a 2-0 start to the season. The game got offensive early as the Devils scored three in the top of the first and Scranton answered with four in the bottom of the inning.
Primavera drew a two-out walk and scored on a two-run homer from Jonathan Chudacoff (Highland Park, Ill./Berkshire School). Thompson walked and later came in to score on a single from Rick Hopkins (Egg Harbor Twp., N.J./Holy Spirit).
The Royals capitalized on an error to score two unearned runs and four in the inning to lead 4-3. The teams traded runs in the second. Brown walked, stole a base and scored on an error to briefly tie the game, 4-4.
Simone singled and scored on a double from Patrick Mergel. The Devils countered with a run in the seventh to trail 6-5. Dolan led off the inning with a solo homer and would score again in a five-inning rally in the eighth to put Dickinson up, 10-6.
Werner led-off the eighth with a solo shot and added an RBI with a bases loaded walk later in the inning. Chudacoff doubled in a pair of runs while Sakowicz singled and scored as well.
Brown doubled in Parker in the top of the ninth for the final of 11-6. Chudacoff drove in four while Dolan went 2-for-5 as well, scoring twice. First-year Ben Woodard (Glastonbury, Conn./Glastonbury) had a tremendous collegiate debut, recording 10 strikeouts, allowing one walk and one run in 5.2 innings to earn the win.
The Red Devils are in action again tomorrow, facing Wilkes and Widener University at the MSI Institute in Aston, Pa.