Pollack continues hot streak, but Hofstra offense not enough against Fairfield
A pair of Austins led the way for Hofstra baseball, but the team fell short to Fairfield University, 9-7, Wednesday afternoon, April 10, when they left the bases loaded in the ninth and were unable to drive the game-tying runs home. The Pride is now 6-22 on the season and have lost three of their last four.
Austin Pollack, who now has five hits in his last eight at bats, had two doubles, one of which drove in a run, a walk and reached home in all three at bats. Austin Gauthier also had a double and drove in three runs.
“[Pollack] has given us life,” Hofstra head coach John Russo said. “He’s exuding confidence and then in turn … people are wanting to be more aggressive.”
After falling 4-0 in the first, the Pride got a run back as Gauthier drove Pollack home on a sacrifice fly. Pollack had a leadoff double and stole third, putting him in position to easily score. The Stags struck again in the second, making it 5-1, but Hofstra tacked on two more in the bottom of the inning off Pollack’s bases loaded walk and a wild pitch that allowed Vinnie Costello to score.
As Hofstra tried to keep things close, Fairfield attacked again in the fourth inning for three more runs, two of which came off a two-run double from Tom Ryan, giving the Stags a 9-4 lead they wouldn’t look back from.
“They had a little bit better pitching, if we were cleaner out in the field, we would’ve held them down a little bit,” Russo said. “Can’t be happier with where the offense is going in the right direction. That was a big goal of mine in these last two days.”
Hofstra showed signs of life in the sixth and ninth innings, with a few players getting on base in their attempt to mount a rally, but Fairfield closer Nick Grabek picked up his seventh save of the season, stranding the tying runs on base. The game ended with Alex Sica popping out to the catcher with runners on first and third.
Neither starter went further than the second inning. Hofstra starter Kyle Skidmore gave up five runs (three earned) in two innings, including four in the first inning. He also had three walks and one strikeout. He took his first loss of the season and is now 0-1. Mike Mirando, who entered the game in relief, did not fare much better, giving up four runs (three earned) on seven hits over three innings. Hofstra’s pitching fell into a groove over the final four innings, as James Cardinale, Daniel Page and Seamus Brazill allowed only one hit and no runs.
Fairfield starter Jake Noviello went just 1 2/3 innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on three hits. Brendan Harkin, who entered in relief, got his first win of the season, pitching a scoreless fourth inning.
Parker Quinn also had two hits for the second consecutive day. Vito Friscia added a run for the Pride as he hit his fifth home run of the season and 22nd of his career. Kevin O’Connor reached base five times in one official at bat, with a hit and four walks.
Up next for Hofstra is a three-game series at home against Towson from Friday, April 12, to Saturday, April 14.
Image Courtesy of Adam Flash