May 2, 2012
DOVER, Del. -
A four-run fourth inning helped Delaware State defeat the Navy baseball team, 6-4, on Wednesday afternoon at Soldier Field in Dover, Del. The win was the 12th consecutive for Delaware State, which improved to 30-14-1 on the year. The loss dropped Navy to 23-27.
Wednesday's game was the regular-season finale for Navy as the Mids will return to action on May 12 with the Patriot League tournament semifinal series against Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass.
"It will be nice to have a few days off after six games in five days," said Navy head coach Paul Kostacopoulos. "Our guys have to prepare for exams now. We'll have a few days to regroup now and we'll get back after it this weekend and start preparing for Holy Cross and the Patriot League Tournament."
Delaware State starting pitcher Ryan Haas held the Mids to just four hits in his six and two-thirds innings of work. He struck out five batters and walked three in improving to 3-1 on the year.
Leading 2-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Hornets batted around and scored four unearned runs. An error, walk and single loaded the bases with one out for the Hornets and Jake Coffey then came in to replace starter Stephen Moore. Coffey got D.J. Miller swinging at strike three for the second out, but the next batter, Troy Drummond, hit a slow-rolling single that made its way through the left side of the infield to score two runs. Scott Davis and Cameron Cecil both followed with RBI singles to give the Hornets a 6-1 lead.
The Mids had their best opportunity to cut the Hornets' lead in the top of the seventh when a double by Chris Cannon, single by Alex Azor and walk to Grant LaTerza loaded the bases with two outs. Haas then walked Greg Dupell on a full count to score Cannon. Reliever Bobby Brown took over and walked Josh Moore on four straight pitches to pull the Mids within three runs at 6-3. But it took Brown just one pitch to retire the next batter Nikolai Simonsen as he bounced into a fielder's choice.
With the score still 6-3 in the top of the ninth inning, DSU brought in closer Chad Sturgeon, who walked Azor and LaTerza to start the inning, giving Navy life. After a strikeout, Sturgeon walked Moore to load the bases for Simonsen, who drove the first pitch he saw through a gap in the right side of the infield to score Azor.
But Navy's comeback attempt then quickly came to an end as Chris Campbell grounded into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
For Sturgeon, it was his seventh save of the season.
Delaware State took a 2-0 with RBI singles by Haas and Aaron Nardone in the first and second inning, respectively.
The Midshipmen sliced the deficit to 2-1 with a solo run in the top of the third inning as a throwing error by second baseman D.J. Miller, on what would have been an inning-ending double play, allowed Azor to score from third base.
Stephen Moore suffered the loss for Navy as he gave up five runs (two earned) off four hits in three and one-third innings.
Cannon led Navy with three hits.