While many Stony Brook sports fans were still feeling depressed over their basketball teams’ disappointing losses to Albany, the university’s baseball team put together a weekend to remember by sweeping the Great Danes. The highlight of the three game series came early Saturday afternoon when senior pitcher Frankie Vanderka pitched his third career no-hitter.
Vanderka put together a near flawless effort in the first game, allowing no hits and walking just two batters over nine shutout innings, in the team’s 7-0 victory. He also struck out ten batters in his masterful performance against Albany, which he ended by striking out second baseman Brian Bullard.
Stony Brook’s offense gave Vanderka a nice lead to work with early on, scoring six runs in the first three innings. Senior Kevin Courtney delivered two RBI singles in the game’s first two innings.
But, all the early run support was not need by Vanderka on this day. He came out of the gate looking strong, as he struck out four of the first six batters he faced.
Only three base runners reached the entire game for Albany (two walks, one hit batter), and none of them reached second base.
With one out in the eighth inning he issued a walk to shortstop Charlie Peltz. But, he then got the next batter, centerfielder Cory Kingston to ground into a 5-4-3 double play.
Vanderka has now pitched three of the program’s four no-hitters. His other two no-hit outings came on March 18, 2011 against NJIT, and March 10, 2013 against Fordham.
Senior pitcher Brandon McNitt got the start in the game two of Saturday’s doubleheader. And while he was unable to outdo Vanderka’s performance, he was able to give his team seven strong innings, and help the Seawolves nail down a 6-2 win.
McNitt pitched a complete game, only giving up two runs and striking out four. He improved to 3-1 on the season.
Stony Brook once again got going early offensively, as they scored twice in the first inning. A sacrifice fly by Courtney, followed by an RBI single by junior Cole Peragine gave SBU an early 2-1 lead.
The Seawolves added another run in the third, before scoring three times in the fourth inning. All three runs would be unearned after freshman Jeremy Giles began the inning by reaching on an error. Sophomore Jack Parenty, junior Robert Chavarria, and Courtney all drove home runs in the frame.
McNitt was able to hold Stony Brook’s lead. He did allow eight hits, but held Albany hitters to just 3-of-13 with runners in scoring position.
In the series finale on Sunday, it was Peragine who came up big for his team, as Stony Brook completed the sweep over Albany. The shortstop went 2-for-4 and drove in two key runs, in his team’s 7-3 win.
Albany trailed for most of the game, but in the seventh inning the Great Danes were able to tie things up at three, on a two-run single by Evan Harasta.
But, in the bottom of the inning Stony Brook would answer. With runners on second and third and no outs, Peragine delivered an RBI single to put his team ahead 4-3.Then later in the frame freshman Toby Handley drew a base loaded walk to extend SBU’s lead to two.
The Seawolves would score two more runs in the eight, before pitcher Cameron Stone came in to close things out. The freshman reliever pitched two shutout innings, and picked up his third save of the season. Sophomore Tyler Honahan picked up the win in relief.
Stony Brook improved to 7-0 at Joe Nathan Field this year. They also swept their first series against an America East opponent since doing so against Maine in May of 2012.
The Seawolves now have an overall record of 9-9. They have won nine of their last 12 games, and will look to continue their recent play when they take on NYIT tomorrow at 3:30 p.m.