March 24, 2007

Bears' Offense Comes Alive in Sweep of Charleston Southern

March 24, 2007

Box Score

Charleston, SC - Facing an opponent that had played 18 more games this season, the Brown baseball team (3-8) picked up a big sweep on Saturday, defeating Charleston Southern (12-17), 11-7 and 9-6, in the first two games of a four-game series. In the opener, senior James Cramphin (Simsbury, CT) nearly went the distance, going 8.2 innings, while senior tri-captains Devin Thomas (Gainesville, FL) and Bryan Tews (Park Ridge, IL) went deep. Freshman Will Weidig (Katy, TX) picked up his second win in the second game, while sophomore Steve Daniels (Fox Point, WI) had three hits to bring his team-leading average to .381.

In both games, the Bears' offense came from all parts of the order. In the first tilt, sophomore shortstop Matt Nuzzo (Everett, MA) led the Bears with three hits, while Tews and sophomore third baseman Robert Papenhause (Hillsborough, CA) each drove in three runs.

Brown started with a run in the top of the first, as junior first baseman Jeff Dietz (Altamonte Springs, FL) drove in Thomas with an RBI double. The Buccaneers took the lead on a three-run home run in the bottom of the third, but Tews got those runs right back with a three-run dinger of his own in the top of the fourth.

Thomas hit a solo shot in the fifth, as the teams traded runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh. With one run already scored in the bottom of the fifth, CSU had a runner on third with one out, when Cramphin induced a ground ball to Papenhause, who tagged the runner and gunned the batter out at first to end the threat. Freshman Nick Puñal (Wellington, FL) drove in a run in the sixth, reaching on a fielder's choice with the bases loaded, and Papenhause broke the game open by driving in three on a single in the seventh.

Cramphin, meanwhile, struck out all three batters in the eighth. Puñal drove in another run in the ninth on a single. Cramphin got two outs in the ninth, but after he let in a run, Head Coach Marek Drabinski turned to junior closer Rob Hallberg (River Edge, NJ), who promptly struck out the first batter he faced to end the game.

For the game, Cramphin allowed 10 hits and four walks, striking out seven, to even his record at 1-1. Daniels was 2-for-4 with a double and a walk. Thomas and Nuzzo scored three runs apiece, each driving in one, while Dietz was 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.

In the second contest, the Bears again scored in their first at-bat, as Dietz singled to drive in Tews and Thomas. In the second, junior Brian Kelaher (Farmington, CT) walked with one out and stole second, then scored on a Daniels triple. Tews then brought Daniels in with a single up the middle, and after Tews advanced to third on a Thomas single, Dietz brought him in with a sacrifice fly.

The Buccaneers broke through for a run against Weidig in the second on a sac fly, but the Brown offense was again busy the next inning. Papenhause singled to lead off, advancing to third on a Puñal double. After a fielder's choice, Kelaher brought Puñal home with an RBI groundout.

The Bears brought the final three runs home in the fifth. Nuzzo led off with a single and scored two betters later on a single by Puñal. Junior J.J. Eno (Kahului, HI) pinch hit and walked, then stole second as Puñal took third on a double steal. Junior Ryan Murphy (Mantoloking, NJ) then got a pinch hit RBI, grounding out to third. Daniels then brought Eno home for the ninth run on a single.

The Bucs got three runs back in the fifth, when Weidig tired a bit, then got two on a home run in the seventh off of junior Peter Moskal (Glastonbury, CT), who was making his first appearance of the season. However, CSU was unable to sustain the rally, as Moskal ended the game with a strikeout.

Weidig had five strikeouts in five innings, allowing four runs on nine hits and three walks. Moskal allowed just one hit and one walk, notching two strikeouts in two innings. At the plate, Tews and Puñal each scored twice and drove in one run on two hits, while Dietz had two hits and drove in two. Daniels had two RBIs and one run to go with his three hits. The Bears stole six bases in the contest, as Daniels, Thomas, Puñal, Eno, Kelaher, and Murphy each stole a bag.

On Sunday, the Bears and Bucs will square off at 3 p.m.