BROOKLYN, N.Y. — Despite a 0-14 start to the season, the St. Joseph's College (Brooklyn) baseball team has won two of their last four games and is set for four league games in the next two days. First, on Saturday (Apr. 7), the Bears host sibling rival SJC Long Island for a twin-bill at Calvert Vaux and return on Sunday for two games against Purchase State.
Saturday, Apr. 7 at 12 & 3 p.m.
vs. SJC Long Island
- In their most recent outing, the Bears (2-17, 1-3 Skyline) traveled to the Bronx to battle Lehman in a single non-conference tilt, falling by a final score of 8-5. Sophomore Kevin Reyes (Bronx, N.Y./AECI) shined in his home borough, going 1-for-2 in the loss with a double, run, and three RBI. Last weekend SJCBK put together back-to-back wins, downing Farmingdale in the latter half of their doubleheader (2-1) and kept the momentum going as they took the first game of a twin-bill against SUNY Poly (4-3) the next day. Junior Anthony Palermo (Patchogue, N.Y./Sachem North) carried the Bears going 4-for-7 with a run and five RBI between the two victories.
- SJC Long Island enters play at 8-9 (3-1 Skyline) having split a doubleheader with Merchant Marine in their most recent outing. However, they are just three games removed from four-straight triumphs, highlighted by a sweep of Maritime (Mar. 25) and a 16-run whopping of John Jay (19-3, Mar. 17). First baseman Paul Britt went off in the Maritime doubleheader, going 6-for-9 with three runs and an RBI on the day.
Keys to the Contest
- Both SJCNY campuses have struggled on the mound in Skyline play thus far, each boasting staff ERAs of greater than 5.00 in four league contests. The Bears currently own a 7.20 ERA within the conference and their overall lowest individual ERA is 5.55 belonging to sophomore right-hander Andrew Watters (Brooklyn, N.Y./Xaverian). SJCBK has shown serious potential on offense, however, as many of their hitters show up on the conference's leaderboards. Most notably, pitcher-turned-position-player J.J. McLaughlin (Elmont, N.Y./Sewanhaka) currently ranks third in the league with a .421 batting average, while Palermo is tied for second in home runs (two) and infielder Michael Gonzalez (Brooklyn, N.Y./Midwood) sits in a tie for third in doubles with five.
- The Golden Eagles' pitching staff has had an up-and-down start as well, posting a 5.31 overall ERA and a 5.18 mark against Skyline opponents. Similar to the Bears, their offense is much stronger ranking sixth in the league with a .293 average, barely lower than fourth-place Mount Saint Mary (.295). In fact, Britt is the conference leader in hitting (.429), slugging (.714), and home runs (three). Additionally, the SJCLI roster includes an eye-popping nine players currently hitting .300 or better.
- LI swept the Bears in last season's doubleheader (Apr. 1) coming out on top in two close games (9-5, 3-0).
Sunday, Apr. 8 at 12 & 3 p.m.
vs. Purchase State
- The Panthers currently sit at 11-10 (3-3 Skyline) but are losers of three-straight and six of their last seven games. Most recently, they fell by one run (6-5) on the road to John Jay (Apr. 5) as the Bloodhounds scored twice in the bottom of the ninth to win in walk-off fashion. Five Panthers recorded multi-hit performances in the loss and each of the first five batters in the lineup drove in a run. Before their recent skid, the Panthers had found the winning formula, posting five-straight victories from Mar. 4-17 highlighted by a sweep of Yeshiva in which they outscored the Macs 42-3.
Keys to the Contest
- Being a conference opponent, SJC will most likely face Purchase's senior ace Jonathon Deacon who leads the squad with an elite 1.48 ERA and is tied for second in the Skyline with four wins (4-0 record). PC doesn't lack pitching depth either as Deacon isn't the only 4-0 hurler in the rotation. Six-foot junior Brian Cunningham has a 3.63 ERA (second on team) with four wins in four appearances (all starts). At the plate, the Panthers have been led by rookie infielder Dylan Flynn and his team-leading .357 average. Flynn and teammate Patrick Wallace are also tied for seventh in the league with 15 RBI.
- The Bears handily swept Purchase on the road last year winning 13-3 and 5-1 in the doubleheader (Apr. 2).