Goose Creek, S.C.—UMBC baseball opened the 2015 campaign by splitting their opening doubleheader with Richmond (L, 2-3) and Lafayette (W, 4-1). Dierks got the win in the nightcap, pitching 2.2 innings of relief.
Game 1- Richmond
Richmond jumped on the Retrievers early, as they got a leadoff home run from Moreman to give the Spiders a quick 1-0 lead. UMBC starter Joe Vanderplas (Fairfax, Va./Fairfax/Tennessee) would settle down from there, not allowing another run for five innings.
The Retriever offense would be stagnant however, going hitless through five innings. Redshirt freshman Mitchell Carroll (Oakton, Va./Oakton) broke through with a single to open up the sixth inning. Brady Zinda (woodbrdige, Va./Hylton) moved Carroll over on a sacrifice bunt, setting up Andrew Casali (New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan). Casali hit a home run over the right field wall to give UMBC a 2-1 lead.
Richmond wasted no time, as they would get back-to-back jacks in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead, 3-2. The Retrievers would threaten in the seventh, loading the bases before Anthony Gatto (Hauppauge, N.Y./Smithtown West) was caught stealing home. The Spiders held on for a 3-2 win.
Vanderplas went 5.1 giving up three runs, striking out five Spiders.
Game 2- Lafayette
Neither side could things going offensively, as both pitchers were dominant at the get-go. Lafayette had the first real chance of the game, but senior Vince Corbi (Medford, N.J./Shawnee) made a nice diving stop to keep the game scoreless.
UMBC stranded baserunners in the second and third innings, and finally broke through on a Gatto home run to right center. The blast gave the Retrievers a 1-0 lead in the fourth.
The Leopards would threaten in the fifth, loading the bases after a double and two walks. Drew Aherne would knock in a run to tie it a 1-1.
UMBC would get aleadoff double down left field line from Casali, as Hunter Dolshun (Warwick, N.Y./Warwick Valley) follows suit with a double to give UMBC the lead back at 2-1 in sixth. Nick Naumann would follow up with a single down the right field line to increase the margin to 3-1.
The Retrievers would get another opportunity in the eighth, but Casali was thrown out at home, kept the game at 3-1. In the ninth, UMBC added insurance thanks to Kevin Lachance (Clifton, Va./Centreville). Lachance smacked a two out double to plate Naumann, giving UMBC a 4-1 lead.
Jonny Dierks (Easton, Md./Independence/Fort Scott CC) threw 2.2 solid innings in relief to get the win. Casali went 3-5 with two doubles in the nightcap to lead the Dawgs.
The Retrievers are back on the diamond tomorrow with a single game against Lafayette.