FLUSHING, N.Y. (Apr. 29, 2018) - The offense came to play for the Queens College baseball team on Sunday (Apr. 29) as the Knights split a doubleheader with Bridgeport at Hennekens Stadium. Queens fell in the first game 12-11 in ten innings before rolling to a 16-7 triumph in the nightcap on Senior Day as the Knights honored ten Class of 2018 graduates.
Game One: Bridgeport 12, Queens (NY) 11 - Ten Innings
An RBI single from Tom Rinaldi off of Dylan Hughes ended the top of the first inning and put the Purple Knights (11-31, 8-12 ECC) up by a run in the opening contest before QC scored twice in the bottom of the frame. An RBI single by red-shirt senior Kevin Kolesar knotted the score and his deft base-stealing allowed senior Paulino Harrington to score from third on a strikeout to give Queens a 2-1 edge. Bridgeport responded with three runs in the second inning, tying the game on two pitches from Hughes. Ben Torres doubled into the right-center field gap on the first pitch and Mark Hirschbeck singled him home on Hughes's second offering of the inning. UB used its own aggressiveness on the basepaths to re-take the lead as Alex Rauso stole second while Hirschbeck scampered home with the Purple Knights' third run of the game. Then, Conall Roberts scorched a one-hopper down the first-base line and off the glove of senior Jonathan Temenak to bring home another run and put UB ahead 4-2. Bridgeport led 5-2 after three innings thanks to Torres swatting a long home run over the right-field fence and onto the adjoining practice field but Hughes helped himself out with an RBI single in the bottom of the frame to cut the deficit back to two runs.
Queens took back the lead in the bottom of the fifth with a three-run frame on an RBI groundout from Temenak as well as run-scoring hits from senior Karl Klesin and Louis Antos. Queens led 6-5 going into the seventh inning before the floodgates opened on both sides with UB scoring six runs in the top of the seventh and QC tacking on five runs in the bottom of the frame. For the Purple Knights, Torres clobbered a three-run homer---his second of the game---as Bridgeport led 11-6 after the frame was done; Queens responded with two-RBI base hits from Antos and pinch-hitter Ronmel Ocampo to help tie the score at 11-all. The game went into extra innings and Hirschbeck doubled home the eventual game-winning run on the first pitch he saw from Dylan Sabia as the visitors claimed a wild contest. Senior Thomas Kelly pitched an inning of scoreless relief for the Knights, striking out a batter to add to his account.
Game Two: Queens (NY) 16, Bridgeport 7
Queens took a 1-0 lead in the first on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Klesin but Bridgeport tied the game in the top of the second on a hit by Rauso. Hirschbeck swatted a home run in the top of the fourth to give UB a 2-1 lead but the Knights charged through the deficit with an eight-run bottom of the fifth inning that included an RBI double by Ocampo, a run-scoring single from senior Thomas Parish and another two-run hit by Antos. Bridgeport's Mark Komarmi had a two-run single in the top of the sixth inning to help cut the deficit to a 9-5 Knights lead but Ron Linsalato gave the hosts a run back in the bottom of the frame with a single of his own. Rinaldi hit a home run for UB in the top of the eighth to bring his side within a 10-4 deficit but bases-clearing doubles by Temenak and Kolesar put the game firmly on ice and gave the Knights' seniors something to smile about after a long day of baseball.
Senior Cameron Burt won the second game, tossing seven innings while striking out four to improve to 2-2 on the year. Felow seniors David Hernandez and Thomas Zaki combined to pitch the ninth inning for Queens in the win.
The Knights begin a four-game series with NYIT on Friday (May 4) at Hennekens Stadium with first pitch coming at 4 p.m.