By Alex Hyman (Staff Writer) Things are looking up for the Hofstra Pride baseball team since it posted a nine-game winning streak, its longest winning streak in 53 years, before dropping three in a row to Northeastern University and Monmouth University.
Heading into spring break, the Pride saw its record sitting at 5-15 before heading on its impressive winning streak.
it started with a victory over the University of Rhode island, then the Pride swept the New York institute of technology, taking one from Manhattan College,
and swept Colonial Athletic Association opponent George Mason University.
“I think it’s the first time this season that we hit, pitched, and played defense,” said Hofstra head coach John Russo. “It was nice to see, once we played well, we were able to win games. To win nine in a row really came at the right time, we were really struggling.”
Junior catcher Matt Reistetter stepped his game up during the winning streak and is hitting a team high .343. He also leads the team with 26 runs batted in and was named CAA player of the week during the middle of the win streak.
“He really carried us,” Russo said. “We needed a third guy to get going, and to have him in the middle of the lineup was very big.”
The Pride traveled to Boston over the weekend and dropped two out of three to the Northeastern Huskies.
Junior ace David D’errico won the only game for the Pride, pitching 7.1 innings giving up six hits and two runs to earn his second win of the year.
“It’s great to be able to count on Dave for six or seven innings,” said Russo. “it also gives us a chance to move Joe Burg to the middle game, which has really benefited him.”
The Pride got its offense from a variety of players, as six different starters all had RBIs. Juniors Kenny Jackson and T.J. Ehrsam led the Pride with two RBIs each.
Burg took the hill for the Pride in the middle game and pitched solid for the third straight time. He couldn’t get the run support needed, however, and saw his record fall to 3-3.
“He has had three straight outstanding performances,” said Russo, “and I think he has really liked being able to see the opponent and have a game plan going into Saturday.”
The Pride has had a problem finding consistency in its third starter and junior Chris Harkey was called upon for the Sunday start this past weekend and lasted just 2.1 innings allowing five runs.
“We are going to work it off of whoever doesn’t pitch on Friday and Saturday,” said Russo of his third starter.
In a midweek out-of-conference game, the Pride lost 5-1 to Monmouth University.
The Pride has mustered just three runs in the last three games, all resulting in losses. This comes after averaging almost nine runs per game during the nine-game winning streak. “The main thing right now is that we are not hitting with run-ners in scoring position which is what we were doing during the win streak,” Russo said.
Hofstra is just 2-19 in the last three games with runners in scoring position.
The Pride takes on St. John’s University on the road in another midweek game before hosting CAA opponent Old Dominion University.
“We need to win at least four of our next six series,” Russo said. “We need to win our games at home.”