Kelich near perfect as Bulldogs grab first win of 2013, 7-0
BULLDOGS RIDE KELICH TO FIRST WIN OF 2013
DAYTON, Ohio – Senior right-hander Peter Kelich (Jackson, N.J.) was perfect for 5.1 innings and took a no hitter into the seventh inning, and classmate Kevin Brown (Northborough, Mass.) became Bryant's Division I leader in career hits as the Bulldogs earned their first victory of the season, 7-0, against Wright State on Friday afternoon at Nischwitz Stadium.
The Bulldogs (1-6-1) opened their spring trip the right way, earning their second victory in as many meetings with the Raiders (3-7). Bryant and Wright State will meet again on Sunday to wrap up play in the Dayton/Wright State Classic.
Coming off a start in which he tossed five scoreless innings against fifth-ranked Oregon State, Kelich turned in one of his best performances in a Bulldog uniform. He retired the first 16 batters he faced before Kieston Greene reached on an infield error with one out in the sixth. Wright State would eventually load the bases with two outs but Kelich worked out of trouble with an inning-ending fielder's choice. Beyond that, Kelich was nearly untouchable. He struck out a pair in the second, two more in the fourth and needed just eight pitches to retire the Raiders in order in the fifth. Wright State finally reached him for a hit in the seventh inning as Michael Timm snuck a one-out single up the middle. Kelich earned his 24th-career victory by allowing just one hit and striking out six over seven scoreless innings.
Already Bryant's Division I leader in several offensive categories, Brown became the hits leader on Friday in the first inning. He ripped a single through the right side to record his 205th-career hit, pushing him past former teammate Jamie Skagerlind for the program lead.
Bryant appeared destined to take the lead in the second inning as senior Dan Muscatello (Hopkinton, Mass.) led off with a triple to right-center field. He wouldn't cross the plate, however, as Wright State starter Casey Henn got a strikeout, a line out and a fly out to end the inning.
The missed opportunity seemed to quiet the Bulldogs but junior Tom Gavitt (North Stonington, Conn.) woke the offense with a single to start the fifth. He was moved to second with a sac bunt but a fly ball to center had him there with two outs. Facing a 1-2 count, senior Adam Claire (Litchfield, Conn.) ripped a double down the right field line to score Gavitt to make it 1-0. Sophomore Daniel St. George (Shelton, Conn.) sent the very next pitch right back up the middle to score Claire, making it 2-0.
The Black and Gold continued to produce with two outs, adding to their lead in the very next inning. With two outs and nobody on base, Brown doubled down the right field line and came around to score on a Gavitt single to center. Muscatello also tried to score on the soft single to center but he was tagged out at home on a nice relay.
Bryant put the game away with four runs over the next two innings. Freshman Robby Rinn (Warwick, R.I.) was hit by a pitch with one out in the seventh, moved to second on a bunt and scored on a throwing error at first. Sophomore Jordan Mountford (Guelph, Ont.) made the error hurt even more as he followed with a double inside the left field line to make it 5-0. Sophomore Carl Anderson (Sudbury, Mass.) closed Bryant's scoring with his first home run of the year, a two-run shot to right, in the eighth inning.
All nine starters produced a hit for the Black and Gold on Friday as they collected a season-high 12 hits. Mountford, Brown and Gavitt all finished with two hits. Junior Jonathan Cohen (Norwalk, Conn.) and freshman Kyle Wilcox (Sandy Hook, Conn.) combined to shutout the Raiders over the final two innings.
The Bulldogs will face Dayton in a doubleheader on Saturday at Time Warner Cable Stadium. First pitch in game one is scheduled for 12:00 p.m.