WESTMINSTER, Md. – The Ursinus College baseball team swept McDaniel in Centennial Conference play on Saturday, falling behind early in each game before battling back behind a relentless offense that went off for 32 combined hits on the afternoon to snag a pair of 8-5 finals and remain unbeaten in league competition.
Freshman Dom Fiorentino (6-for-10, four RBI, three runs) was one of a litany of sluggers to post huge offensive days in the Bears' first sweep at McDaniel since 2003. The Green Terror had won five straight and nine of the past ten in the series coming into Saturday, but recenty history mattered little to an Ursinus (16-4, 5-0) squad that has won six in a row and now sits alone atop the CC standings.
Senior Alex Campbell finished 5-for-9 with three RBI for the twin bill. Classmate Seth Regensburg overcame a sluggish start to grind through eight effective innings in the opener, junior Pierce Greenleaf improved to 5-0 by pitching into the eighth in the second contest, and senior Lou Aikins earned the save in both; Aikins worked out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the bottom of the ninth in Game 2 to preserve the sweep.
Game 1: Ursinus 8, McDaniel 5
The Bears drew first blood in game one on an RBI single off the bat of Campbell, but the Green Terror started their half of the first inning with consecutive doubles from Antonio Rosanova, Nick Valori, and Eric Grantland. An RBI single by Kasey Nelson gave the Green and Yellow a 3-1 advantage before Ursinus recorded an out.
The Bears pulled within a run in the third on senior CJ Diana's run-scoring single and later took the lead in the fourth after a two run-double from Fiorentino.
McDaniel regained the lead in the bottom of the fourth, but the Bears plated an equalizer in the fifth on a single from senior Vincent Terry. Terry added two doubles in a three-hit performance. Diana led off the seventh with a double to ignite the go-ahead rally. Later, senior Austin Kurey drove in his fellow senior with a base hit.
Fiorentino continued his hot streak at the dish, driving in a critical insurance run in the eighth with his third double of the game. Fiorentino was one of seven Ursinus players to have at least two hits in the opening game, going 4-for-6 with three doubles, three RBI, and two runs scored in a career game at the plate.
Ursinus tacked on another in the ninth when senior Tom Carey plated sophomore Carter Usowski, who reached on a leadoff double. Aikins came on in relief for Regensburg and retired the side for his third save of the season.
Regensburg bounced back admirably from a rough start, working eight full innings and striking out 11 to just one walk. He allowed nine hits and five earned runs, but only one of the Green Terror's hits came after the fourth inning. After spotting McDaniel two baserunners with no outs in the fifth, the left-hander set down the last 12 men he faced, closing with three consecutive 1-2-3 frames.
Game 2: Ursinus 8, McDaniel 5
An explosive sixth inning propelled Ursinus to victory in Game 2. Down 3-2, the Bears sent 11 men to the plate and scored five runs to take a four-run lead.
Diana reached on a fielder's choice following Campbell's leadoff double. Both runners advanced on a passed ball and scored on a double from Usowski. Carey doubled in Usowski and was driven in on a two-run single off the bat of junior Travis Kozak. Kozak scored the Bears' fifth run of the inning on an RBI single from Fiorentino, who scored again in the eighth after being driven in by Campbell.
Aikins came in for the final five outs and shut down McDaniel to preserve the win and complete the sweep.
Greenleaf (5-0) worked 7.1 innings, conceding five runs - three earned - on seven hits with one strikeout.
Ursinus returns to action tomorrow versus Haverford in a game that was rescheduled from Friday. First pitch is set for 1:30 PM.