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Bulldogs slug way to series victory over CCSU, 14-4

Denise Ipsen Photo
Denise Ipsen Photo

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – Sophomore Sam Owens (Scituate, R.I.) hit his first career grand slam and redshirt sophomore Jimmy Titus (Stafford, Conn.) had four hits and four RBI as the Bryant University baseball slugged its way to a series victory over Central Connecticut with a 14-4 win in game two of Sunday's doubleheader at Conaty Park.

Bryant finished the game with three doubles, four home runs and 18 total hits. The win clinched the series for the Black and Gold who won the series opener on Saturday, 12-3.

Owens added an RBI single to his grand slam to finish with a career-high five RBI, while Titus doubled twice and hit a three-run home run to cap an incredible week at the plate. Junior James Ciliento (Mahwah, N.J.) hit a two-run home run, redshirt sophomore Ryan Ward (Millbury, Mass.) had two hits and three runs scored and senior Nick Angelini (Bedford, N.H.) homered and finished with three hits.

Sophomore Will Treuel (Wolfeboro, N.H.) earned his first career win with 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. Redshirt junior Jack Owens (Scituate, R.I.) added shutdown relief as he struck out a career-high five over 2 2/3 hitless innings of relief.  

Game Information
Bryant 14, Central Connecticut 4
Records: Bryant (12-9, 2-1 NEC), Central Connecticut (8-7, 1-2 NEC)
Location: Conaty Park (Smithfield, R.I.)
W|L|S: Will Treuel (1-0) | Patrick Mitchell (2-2)

Coach Owens' Comments

"We expect to win series. What's not expected is to give away five runs in the first game. We didn't play a good first game. Our offensive approach was no good and we made three defensive errors that led to five runs. It was disappointing. To score the runs we did in the second game is a tribute to our offense. Sam had a huge hit that totally changed the momentum that was not in our favor at the time. Will did a solid job and Jack did a great job for two innings to keep it there as we expanded the lead. Nick had a good day offensively and Sam and Gaby both swung it well. It wasn't a great weekend for us overall. The length of our starts is a concern. We'll evaluate it on Monday and then we have two midweek games before going on the road next weekend.

Key Moments

  • Trailing 3-1 in the third, Ward and Titus roped back-to-back two-out singles and junior Chris Wright (Cumberland, R.I.) walked to load the bases. Owens followed by lifting a 1-1 pitch over the wall in left for his first career grand slam and a 5-3 Bryant lead.
  • Bryant rallied with two outs and no one on again in the fourth, with Titus's three-run blast making it 8-4.       

How it Happened

  • Central Connecticut struck first with four-straight two-out singles in the second inning.
  • Bryant answered in the bottom of the inning as Owens was hit by a pitch, took second on a great read, went to third on a single and scored on a ground out by freshman Jake Gustin (Peabody, Mass.).
  • CCSU took the lead in the top of the third. The Blue Devils hit a ground ball to second with the bases loaded and the Bulldogs were able to get an out at second but the relay to first was wild, allowing two runs to score.
  • In the bottom of the inning, Ward and Titus both singled and Wright walked before Owens hit his first career grand slam to make it 5-3.
  • Jack Owens came on in the 4th and got a strikeout to strand a runner at second.
  • Bryant responded with another two-out rally. Ciliento singled, Ward walked and Titus followed with a monstrous three-run home run to the right of dead center.
  • The Bulldogs extended their lead with another two-out run in the sixth as Owens scored Titus (double) with a single to center.
  • Bryant put the game away with five runs in the seventh. Angelini got it started with a solo home run down the left field line and Ciliento hit a two-run home run to deep center two batters later to make it 12-4. Titus would add an RBI double and junior Gaby Cruz (Miami, Fla.) capped the scoring with a sac fly.    

Stats

  • Bryant outhit CCSU, 18-6.
  • Ciliento finished 2-for-5 with a home run, two RBI and two runs scored.
  • Ward went 2-for-5 with three runs scored.
  • Titus finished 4-for-5 with two doubles, a home run, four RBI and four runs scored.
  • Owens went 3-for-3 with a grand slam, five RBI and three runs scored.
  • Cruz went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
  • Angelini finished 3-for-5 with a home run, RBI and a run scored.
  • Senior Craig Lacey (Westfield, Mass.) started and allowed three runs on four hits in 2-plus innings. He walked two and struck out three.
  • Treuel followed with 1 1/3 innings of one-run relief. He allowed two hits.
  • Jack Owens (Scituate, R.I.) tossed 2 2/3 hitless and scoreless innings. He walked two and struck out five.
  • Sophomore Tyler Schoff (Lee Center, N.Y.) and redshirt senior Justin Snyder (Georgetown, Mass.) combined to retire the final nine batters. Schoff struck out two in the seventh and Snyder tossed a scoreless eighth and ninth.   

Notes and Notables

  • Bryant improves to 34-11 all-time against Central Connecticut.
  • The Bulldogs scored 10+ runs in three of the four games this week.
  • Bryant has now won or split 64 of its 68 NEC series since 2010.
  • The Bulldogs also won their 200 NEC regular-season game.
  • Head coach Steve Owens moved within one win of his 300th with the program. 
  • Bryant pitching surrendered just 13 hits on the weekend.
  • Sam Owens is the second Bryant player to hit a grand slam this year, joining sophomore Shane Kelly (Sewell, N.J.).
  • Owens drove in a career-high five runs. His previous career high was three and came last year at FDU.
  • Owens also tied his career high with three hits.
  • Ward has hit safely in 10-straight games and has 20 hits during the streak.
  • Angelini has now had a hit and a run scored in each of Bryant's last seven games.
  • Angelini's home run was his 15th career home run. He's now tied for seventh in DI program history.
  • Angelini went 6-for-8 with three RBI and two runs scored in two games on Sunday.
  • Angelini now has four-straight multi-hit games and has hit safely in seven straight.
  • Angelini went 8-for-11 with five RBI and four runs scored in the series.
  • Titus hit his fifth home run of the year and his third of the week. He finished the week with 14 RBI in four games.  
  • Titus went 6-for-15 with three doubles, a home run, seven RBI and four runs scored.
  • Cruz went 4-for-8 on the day and now has three-straight multi-hit games.
  • Ciliento hit his fourth home run of the year and has hit safely in 10-straight games.
  • Jack Owens registered career highs in innings pitched (2.2) and strikeouts (5). He's tossed 8 1/3 scoreless innings this year.
  • Treuel's victory was the first of his career.

Up Next

Bryant plays a home-and-home with Brown during the midweek. The two teams will play Tuesday at Brown and Wednesday at Conaty Park.