Baseball off to perfect 6-0 start

For the St. John’s baseball team, it’s hard to imagine getting off to a better
start to the season.

The Red Storm made the trip
to Florida for the Big Ten-Big East
challenge, and came away with three
victories in all three games against
Minnesota, Michigan, and Illinois,
improving the Red Storm’s record to 6-0.
Their 6-0 record is tied for the best
start under head coach Ed Blankmeyer.

The team also started 6-0 in 2008.

The Red Storm kicked off the
weekend by defeating Minnesota 5-4
on Friday. Freshman Jeremy Baltz
connected on his first career home run, which was a solo blast in the second
inning, which gave the Red Storm a 1-0 lead. Baltz went 3-for-5 with a home
run and two RBIs.

The game was seemingly in hand in the ninth inning for the Red Storm, as they clung to a 5-2 lead. Ryan Cole entered the game in the ninth and allowed
two runs after walking two batters and
giving up back-to-back hits. Daniel
Burawa then entered the game, and
would just need one pitch to enduce
a groundout to end the game, as
St. John’s escaped with the 5-4 win.

Pitching would be the story the next day, as St. John’s narrowly edged
Michigan 2-1. Nick Cenatiempo,
Stephen Rivera, Kevin Kilpatrick, and
Eddie Medina combined to give
up a total of five hits and the lone
earned run. Scott Ferrara and Joe Panik
drove in the two runs for the Red
Storm, as Ferrara had two singles and
Panik went 2-for-4.

The Red Storm took a 2-0 lead in
the third after Panik’s RBI double. The two runs would be all that Michigan
starter Matt Miller would allow, as he
would pitch six innings for Michigan.

Michigan finally got on the board in
the seventh on a sacrifice fly.

Eddie Medina pitched the eighth and ninth innings for the Red Storm, struck out one batter and did not give up a run,
earning the save.

But the Red Storm’s third win of the Big Ten-Big East Challenge would not come easy.

The Red Storm trailed for the first time this season, as Illinois would scored once in the second and three in
the fifth to take a 4-0 lead.

But the Red Storm, who didn’t
even get a hit in the first four innings,
scored four runs in the fifth to tie
the game.

Matt Wessinger had an RBI groundout in the sixth to give the Red Storm their
first lead of the game. They would add
another run in the seventh inning as
Burawa entered the game in the ninth
inning for a 1-2-3 inning, and he would pick up his second save of the weekend
to seal the 6-4 come-from-behind victory.

The Red Storm will look to
continue their winning ways as they
head to East Tennessee State on
March 5 for a three game set.