KISSIMMEE, Fla. – Nick DeFeo's first career start set an awfully high bar.
The sophomore right-handed pitcher worked a four-hit shutout against a 7-1 Rhode Island College squad, helping the Ursinus College baseball team salvage a split of its last two games in Florida.
Already with a save under his belt during the annual spring-break trip to the Sunshine State, DeFeo was untouchable in the nightcap, locking down the Anchormen and avenging an 11-7 loss in the morning.
Juniors Dom Fiorentino and Alex Mumme continued to climb the all-time charts in triples and doubles, respectively, to help the Bears return home with a .326 team batting average and a 7.8 runs-per-game average in tow.
Game 1: Rhode Island College 11, Ursinus 7
RIC put the Bears (5-5) in a big hole in the opener, pouring on four runs in each of the first two innings behind a top-three in the order that finished 7-for-12 with seven runs and three RBI.
Ursinus did its best to make it interesting. Trailing 10-1 in the fifth, Fiorentino tallied his sixth triple of the season to ignite a one-out rally. The junior's triples total is already just one off the single-season school record set by Mike Gizzi in 2003. Sophomore Will Peiffer's RBI single was the first of three consecutive base hits, the last a run-scoring knock from freshman Jon Moldoff. Sophomore Jerry Scavone's sacrifice fly cut the margin to 10-5.
After the Anchormen scored one in the seventh, senior Carter Usowski moved into a tie for third in program history with his 32nd career double, an RBI knock to right that scored Scavone. Freshman Tim Pyne drove in another with a pinch-hit single before RIC closed it out.
Usowski finished 1-for-2 with three runs scored and a pair of walks. Mumme was 2-for-4 with a double, putting him within three of the school record of 44 two-baggers. Peiffer went 1-for-3 with a run, an RBI, and a walk.
Game 2: Ursinus 5, Rhode Island College 0
Behind DeFeo's right arm, the Bears ended their trip on a high note. The sophomore allowed just four hits and a walk, striking out four and keeping the Anchormen at bay for seven sparkling innings. RIC's first hit was a one-out single in the fourth, and DeFeo erased a leadoff single in the seventh with a 6-4-3 twin killing.
The Bears piled on three more in the sixth. Gross worked a leadoff walk and took second on a passed ball, then moved to third on Fiorentino's bunt single. Fiorentino stole second and Mumme was intentionally walked to load the bases for Moldoff, who brought Gross in with a grounder to first. Scavone broke it open with a two-run triple to left.
The triple was the first for Scavone, who matched Mumme and Peiffer for the team lead with 11 RBIs on the trip. Gross was 2-for-3 with a run scored and an RBI.
Fiorentino (1-for-2, two walks) and senior Mike Stanziale (three walks) each reached base three times for the Bears, who drew nine walks. Fiorentino, Peiffer, and Stanziale each stole a base.