Hofstra's offensive struggles continue in fourth straight loss
Coming into Saturday’s Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) matchup with the Elon University Phoenix, the Hofstra Pride baseball team was on a three-game losing streak, having not scored more than three runs in those games. Those offensive struggles continued on Saturday at Elon, as Hofstra dropped their fourth consecutive contest by a score of 6-3.
George Kirby was missing bats from the get-go for Elon (19-16, 6-5 CAA) as he collected three strikeouts in the first inning.
It was a sign of things to come for Kirby. He was dominant over seven innings, scattering five hits and yielding one unearned run. He finished the day with 13 punchouts.
Kirby, a New York native, improved to 6-3 on the season. He struck out at least 10 batters for the fourth time on Saturday.
Hofstra (14-12, 4-7 CAA) starter Matt Weissheier struggled with his command in the opening inning. After issuing a leadoff walk, back-to-back singles by Garrett Stonehouse and Ryne Ogren put Elon ahead 1-0.
The Phoenix tacked on another run in the second frame. Matt Oldham hit a leadoff double, advanced to third on a wild pitch by Matt Weissheier and scored on a sacrifice fly by Hayden Platt.
Elon extended its advantage to 3-0 in the fifth inning on a two-out single by Josh Broughton, who crossed home plate when the next batter, Zach Evers, doubled to left field.
Matt Weissheier was finished after firing five innings, allowing three runs with three strikeouts and two walks.
The Pride took advantage of an Elon error in the sixth inning to put a run on the board. After a one-out base hit by catcher Vito Friscia, Elon right fielder Liam O’Regan dropped a fly ball off the bat of Teddy Cillis. Friscia advanced to third base and Cillis ended up on second following the miscue.
After Mikey Riesner struck out, Vinnie Costello singled to bring Friscia home safely. Cillis tried to score behind Friscia, but was thrown out at home to end the scoring chance for the Pride.
The Phoenix responded during the home half of the seventh inning off Hofstra reliever Michael James. Elon began the inning with a bunt single by Evers and a base hit up the middle from Stonehouse.
Ogren followed up the base knocks with his third home run of the season to put Elon ahead 6-1.
After Elon used the long ball to open up a five-run lead, Hofstra tried to fight its way back into the contest with some small ball.
Austin Gauthier drew a walk to open up the eighth inning for the Pride. He advanced to second on an errant pickoff throw by Elon reliever Jared Wetherbee. Steven Foster singled to score Gauthier.
Wetherbee issued free passes to Cillis, Costello and Rob Weissheier, bringing Foster in to score from third.
Robbie Welhaf worked around a couple of singles in the ninth inning to pick up his fourth save of the season.