COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. – The Ursinus College baseball team used its bats to take out the frustration of a 5-3 opening setback against Gettysburg, piling up its highest hit total in a decade to soar into a split with a 16-2 rout in Centennial Conference action Saturday.
Junior Travis Kozak (4-for-5, two runs, RBI), senior Alex Campbell (4-for-5, three runs, RBI), and sophomore Carter Usowski (4-for-5, three runs, five RBI) combined to go 12-for-15 with seven RBI and senior Austin Kurey started the nightcap parade with a three-run homer in the first inning for Ursinus (20-7, 7-3), which scored the most runs against Gettysburg in a single game in program history.
Campbell finished 6-for-9 overall with three runs and two RBI, Usowski wound up 5-for-9 and drove in six runs, and Kurey racked up three extra-base hits for Ursinus.
Senior Kieran Geyer also homered in the second game as the Bears pounded out 22 hits, tied for their highest total since racking up 23 in a 16-1 win over Bethany in 2007.
With the resounding victory in Game 2, Ursinus locked up its first 20-win season since 2009.
Game 1: Gettysburg 5, Ursinus 3
The Bears struck first in the bottom of the third, when Campbell opened the scoring on a two-out RBI single to right center. Gettysburg equalized on an RBI double by Connor Tom in the fourth, but the Bears answered right back in the bottom half; Kurey tripled to lead off and came home on Usowski's groundout to make it 2-1.
Back-to-back two-out doubles by senior CJ Diana and Geyer stretched the margin out to 3-1 in the bottom of the sixth, but the Bullets had their response ready. Two walks and a hit batsman loaded the bases with one out and chased junior Pierce Greenleaf from the game, and Chuck Probst bounced a two-run single through the left side to even the score at 3. Will Anderson's two-out double down the left-field line put Gettysburg on top for good.
Anderson drew a bases-loaded walk to force in an insurance run in the ninth, and Aaron Bezio closed the door with a 1-2-3 bottom half for his fifth save of the season.
Kurey had a double and triple in going 2-for-4, a line matched by Campbell and Diana.
The top four in the order – Probst, Logan Sneed, Anderson, and Tom – did the damage for Gettysburg, combining to go 8-for-18 and driving in all five runs.
Brad DeMartino (4-0) picked up the win, allowing three runs on ten hits with six strikeouts over 7.2 innings. Greenleaf (5-1) took his first loss of the season after allowing four runs on six hits with three strikeouts and a pair of walks in 6.1 frames. Senior Bille Buckwalter punched out three Bullets in 1.2 innings of relief.
Game 2: Ursinus 16, Gettysburg 2
The Bullets led 1-0 after the top of the first, but it was all Bears from there. Kurey started the party with a three-run shot in the bottom half, and Ursinus was off to the races.
The home side pushed across six more runs in the third. Campbell had an RBI single to ignite the spurt, and Usowski posted an RBI double. After an RBI groundout by senior Seth Regensburg, senior Vincent Terry tripled to right center to score Geyer and came home on Kozak's knock through the right side.
Usowski's RBI single preceded Geyer's two-run blast in the fourth, the second of his career.
Kurey scored three runs and drove in three more for Ursinus, while Regensburg was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Geyer scored twice in addition to his round-tripper, and Fiorentino finished 3-for-5 with a pair of runs.
The beneficiary of this excess support was senior Connor Moriarty, who allowed just five hits and two runs in seven strong innings, striking out five in the process. Junior Steve DiStefano worked two perfect innings with three whiffs.
The Bears tagged Gettysburg starter Eric Brown for seven runs in two innings, and the Bullets needed six pitchers to make it through.
The Bears head to DeSales for a non-conference contest on Monday, April 17.