After Boston College’s Spenser Payne hit a leadoff home run in the 10th inning to give Boston College a 4-3 lead on April 25, the Eagles were poised to top the Johnnies on Easter Monday.
But a series of walks and defensive miscues by the Eagles sparked a 10th inning rally by the Red Storm and St. John’s walked off Jack Kaiser Stadium with a 5-4 win.
The victory was the fourth walk-off win for the Red Storm this season and improved their record to 22-13. St. John’s is also 12-0 at Kaiser Stadium this seaason. Boston College fell to 14-24.
The Red Storm got it all started in the bottom of the 10th, when Boston College pitcher Garret Smith walked Jeremy Baltz and Paul Karmas, the first two hitters he faced.
That set up Kyle Richardson’s bunt attempt, which Smith threw to third base in trying to get Baltz on the fielder’s choice. The throw, however, pulled the third baseman off the bag, and everyone was safe.
Then, with Sean O’Hare at the plate and the bases loaded, Boston College committed an enormous error as the junior hit a ground ball to the second baseman, who misplayed the hop and allowed pinch runner Pat Talbut to score the winning run.
Karmas, Rowan Wick, O’Hare, and Frankie Schwindel each had an RBI in the winning effort. Sean Hagan improved his record to 2-1, as he got the win in relief despite giving up a home run to Payne in the 10th inning. Hagan worked 1 2/3 innings for the win.
Starting pitcher Brendan Lobban gave up one earned run in a five-inning no-decision.
The Red Storm fell behind 2-0 early, as Lobban gave up unearned runs in both the first and third innings. But a three-run fourth by St. John’s made up for it.
A lead-off double by Joe Panik, and a Jeremy Baltz single put runners on the corners with nobody out, and knocked Boston College starter Geoff Oxley out of the game. Paul Karmas then greeted reliever Matt Alvarez with an RBI double down the left field line to put St. John’s on the board for the first time.
Rowan Wick and Frankie Schwindel then hit RBI singles to give St. John’s its first lead of the day at 3-2.
The lead was short lived for the Red Storm, as Smith drove in a run on an RBI groundout to tie the game in the fifth inning for Boston College.
Both teams traded zeros until the dramatic 10th inning unfolded. Stephen Rivera entered the game in the 6th inning to relieve Lobban, and retired the first nine batters he faced before finally giving up a single in the 9th inning. Rivera pitched 3.1 innings, and allowed just one hit and struck out four batters, as he held Boston College down.
The Red Storm will now travel to Hofstra on Wednesday, April 27th for a 3 p.m. local showdown.
Editor’s Note: Since defeating Boston College, the Red Storm have gone 1-4. The team defeated Hofstra on 4/27 before being swept by South Florida and dropping a mid-week game to Iona on May 3. The Johnnies host Pittsburgh this weekend.