Pitching Leads Pirates Past Villanova

Date: April 28, 2018

By: Erin Kelly

It was pitching duel at Owen T. Carroll field Saturday afternoon as the Seton Hall Pirates defeated the Villanova Wildcats 2-1.

The pitching was key to today's win and has been the catalyst for the Pirates 7-1 Big East start.

"Our starting pitching's done a really good job keeping us in ball games," head coach Rob Sheppard said.

Sophomore Ricky Devito picked up his second win in Big East play and went six strong innings.

"Ricky has the ability to control a game on the mound. He gets a lot of strikeouts," said Sheppard.

The reigning Big East player of the week struck out nine over the course of his outing while only allowing three hits and three walks. DeVito lasted long enough to pick up his third win of the season and improved to a 3-1 record with a 1.43 ERA.

The Pirates bats were cold against Villanova starter Ryan Doty, who outlasted DeVito and pitched eight innings.

"We were floundering a little bit," said Rob Sheppard. "We weren't creating much of an offense."

Junior Sebastiano Santorelli was the first leadoff batter to reach for the Pirates when he lined a double to right field. Al Molina, who went 2-for-4, got his second hit of the day with a single and drove in Santorelli. Tyler Shedler-McAvoy came up two batters later and hit a double of his own to drive in Molina, and gave the Pirates what would be their winning run.

Shedler-McAvoy went 2-for-4 with an RBI today. He is 4-for-9 in the series with two RBIs and two runs scored.

The bullpen built off of DeVito's strong outing. Noah Thompson, Corey Sawyer, and Matt Leon pitched a collective three innings, giving up four hits, one run, walking two, and striking out three. Leon picked up his seventh save of the season. In his career, Leon now 11 saves, giving him sole possession of fifth place in most saves in program history.

The Pirates are now 19-15-1 on the season and 7-1 in Big East Play. The Pirates have won all three of their Big East series this season, the first time they have done that since 1995. They look to sweep Villanova tomorrow at Owen T. Carrol field. Mike Lovero and Angelo Maltese will have the call starting at 12:00 p.m. You can catch all the action on 89.5 FM WSOU, wsou.net, or on the iheart radio app.

Erin Kelly can be reached at erin.kelly@student.shu.edu.

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