Menlo Powers Past St. Joseph's In West Coast Trip

ATHERTON, CA – Seeing their first action on the west coast, the St. Joseph's College baseball team dropped four games to Menlo College (16-11) in a pair of doubleheaders on Thursday and Friday at Cartan Field in Atherton, CA.

The hot-hitting Menlo squad outscored St. Joseph's 44-6 and had over twice as many hits (51-24) for the series.

Alvaro Quinones led the Bears for the four-game set, collecting four hits, three RBI, a double and a stolen base.  Joe Boccia also picked up four base knocks.  John Porcelli had a pair of hits, including his first career home run.

On the mound, Danny Contant had a magnificent outing in game three despite taking the loss, allowing one earned run and surrendering four hits in six innings of work.

Shane Parsons (Palo Alto, CA/Canada College) led Menlo for the series accumulating eight RBI, seven hits, seven runs scored, two home runs and a double.  Michael Brandi (Littleton, CO/Heritage HS) also had seven hits with three RBI, and a home run.

St. Joseph's concludes their west coast swing with a doubleheader against Division II Academy of Art University on Saturday, April 3 before boarding a plane to head back to New York.

Game 1 – Menlo 11, St. Joseph's 0

Menlo got off to a quick start knocking three straight extra-base hits in the first leading to a three run opening frame.  The Oaks added a single run in the second and two runs in the fourth. 

Both runs in the fourth came on a scary moment when Keith Juricich (San Mateo, CA/Serra) and Thomas Karasinski (Staten Island, NY/New Dorp) collided while chasing a drive to right center.  Karasinski was taken to the hospital and later diagnosed with three fractured ribs, likely ending his season.

St. Joseph's struggled to get anything going offensively, scattering seven hits and unable to advance a runner past second base. 

Game 2 – Menlo 21, St. Joseph's 4

St. Joseph's hung tough with Menlo through four innings, finding themselves down only 2-0.  The Oaks broke the game open in the fifth inning scoring 12 runs on 12 hits, sending 17 batters to the plate.

Starter Sean Sweeney (Sonoma, CA/Cardinal Newman HS) allowed only one hit through five innings.  The Bears finally got on the board in the sixth when Joe Geloso (Staten Island, NY/Monsignor Farrell) singled and later scored on a grounder.

The Bears bats started to come alive in the seventh when Porcelli led off with a home run, his first career four-bagger.  St. Joseph's added two more runs with two-outs when Juricich walked and Anthony Langone (Staten Island, NY/Moore Catholic) singled, both scoring on a Quinones double.

Game 3 – Menlo 1, St. Joseph's 0

The highlight of the series came in the form of a pitching duel between Menlo's Brian Priestley (Simi Valley, CA/Moorpark College) and St. Joseph's Danny Contant (Staten Island, NY/Xaverian) with both pitchers allowing a combined three hits through five innings.  After issuing a pair of two-out walks in the fifth, Contant worked out a bases loaded jam facing the heart of the Oaks lineup. 

The teams remained deadlocked at 0-0 entering the seventh and final inning and Sweeney retired the Bears in order for the fourth time.  Kyle Wilkerson led off the bottom half of the frame with a double prompting Paul Piccirillo (Brooklyn, NY/Xaverian) to come in relief for Contant who reached his pitch count.  Piccirillo was unable to hold off the Oaks as they knocked two straight hits for the walk-off victory.

Contant (0-3) took the loss on the mound, giving up four hits, one run, striking two and walking two.  Sweeney struck out six and walked one en route to the complete game, two-hit, shutout victory.

Game 4 – Menlo 11, St. Joseph's 2

St. Joseph's took their first lead of the series scoring one run in the second inning with Quinones singling to score Joe Saez (Brooklyn, NY/Cobble Hill) who led off the inning with a double.  Menlo responded in the top of the third posting seven runs, benefitting from the six walks issued by the Bears' hurlers.

The Bears threatened to get some runs back in the fourth loading the bases with two outs, but St. Joseph's managed to score only one run, with Saez scoring for the second time on a Geloso walk.

St. Joseph's managed only one more hit for the final three innings and Menlo added a pair of runs in the fourth and seventh to seal the victory.