College of St. Joseph defeated Marygrove College 2-0 in the opening round of the USCAA National Tournament on Monday, May 15.
The match-up was made after the tenth-seeded Marygrove defeated the seventh-seeded Penn State Mont Alto 9-7 earlier in the day.
The game went scoreless for five and a half innings of play, until the Saints had the bases loaded following a single by All-American Jared Morello and two walks. Tommy Grant was walked, bringing Morello in from third to make it 1-0 in favor of the Saints.
In the top of the sixth inning, Marygrove's Chase Younkin and Juan Ventura struck out, but Travis Tarrence was able to gain a walk out of the Saints' powerhouse pitcher Nicholas Burch.
Burch struggled with control, hitting Marygrove's Antonio Carta and advancing Tarrence to second before the Mustangs drew another walk to load the bases. Burch was able to remain calm and get Jacob Rodgers to fly out to right to get out of the jam.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, Saints freshman John Loshiavo reached on a fielders choice and was able to advance to second with a single by Nick Rodriguez. Morello knocked in the first RBI of the tournament with a single to bring Loshiavo home for a 2-0 lead. The Mustangs were able to get two runners on base in the seventh, but didn't find a way to capitalize.
Burch pitched a complete game, striking out 13 in the process and allowing just four hits on 31 batters faced. He walked six. Grant and Morello had an RBI for the Saints.
The Mustangs' Reed Banner pitched five innings, giving up just three hits and one earned run on 24 batters faced.
With the loss, Marygrove moves to the elimination bracket and will face the winner of the Penn State Mont Alto vs. Wright State Lake game being played today at 1:30.
The Saints will face the sixth-seeded Penn State DuBois beginning at 4 p.m. at East Field in Glens Falls, N.Y.