Daniel Rizzie pounded out three hits, while scoring twice and driving in two runs to help Xavier win its first BIG EAST Conference game.
April 4, 2014
BETHESDA, Md. - An offensive explosion led to 12-unanswered runs and a 15-6 win for Xavier in its first BIG EAST Conference game as members of the league against Georgetown. Four Musketeers registered multiple RBIs in the contest and Eric Stiene was masterful on the mound in relief to earn the win.
"It's great to get our first BIG EAST win under the belt," said head coach Scott Googins. "Our approach was great all day offensively, and when they took the lead our guys continued to battle to get us back in the ballgame. Eric Stiene came in and was great out of the pen for us, holding that momentum once we regained the lead."
Xavier (14-13, 1-0 BIG EAST) got on the board with Joe Forney's RBI in the first inning, but Georgetown (12-14, 0-1 BIG EAST) answered with a run of its own in the home half of the second to even the score.
Stephen Schoettmer's triple and David Morton's single in the fourth inning helped XU regain a 3-1 lead. The advantage was short lived, however, as GU posted five runs on four hits and a pair of walks in its half of the frame to put the Musketeers in a 6-3 hole.
But, Xavier's offense found a rhythm at the plate and scored 12 answered runs over its final five at-bats. Vinny Nittoli cracked his team-high-tying third homerun of the season, a two-run shot to left field in the fifth to pull Xavier within one, 6-5.
Then, XU poured on a five-run sixth to take control of the game, 10-6. After Jake Forrester scored on a GU error to tie the game, Daniel Rizzie singled to push Xavier ahead for good. Derek Hasenbeck's double and Brian Bruening's single brought home the final three runs of the frame.
Rizzie doubled home another run in the seventh and Xavier tacked on four more insurance runs in the ninth. Nittoli and Michael Moore picked up an RBI each, while Andre Jernigan's triple brought in the other two runs.
Eric Stiene was masterful in relief, tossing three innings of one hit baseball to earn the win. Stiene registered four strikeouts and walked just one Hoya, running his record to 2-0 on the season. He replaced Xavier starter Adam Hall, who surrendered six runs on seven hits and a pair of walks with six strikeouts.
Daniel Przeniczny gave up a walk in the ninth before closing out the game for Xavier's first win since joining the BIG EAST last July.
Nittoli and Rizzie led the offensive firepower. Nittoli went 2-for-6 at the plate with three RBIs and two runs scored, while Rizzie hit 3-for-6, drove in two runs and scored twice.
Bruening and Jernigan also drove in two runs, while Joe Forney and Schoettmer scored twice apiece.
Xavier and Georgetown will square off in game two of the series on Saturday afternoon in a 1 p.m. start. Live stats and video will be provided at guhoyas.com.