Rams Get Past La Salle, 5-2; Advance to Face #2 Charlotte on Thursday
Rhody's Starting Lineup
Roy (CF), Caputo (SS), Stenhouse (RF), LeBel (3B), O'Connell (C), Fortunato (2B), Quinn (1B), Lee (DH), Landi (LF), Bradstreet (P)
La Salle's Starting Lineup
Klem (3B), Baron (SS), Williams (1B), Korenblatt (RF), Conroy (LF), Ravert (DH), Welling (C), Smith, Jr. (CF), McGowan (2B), O'Neill (P)
How it Happened
Third-seeded Rhode Island (35-22) jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning after Joe Landi scored on a La Salle throwing error before Tim Caputo crossed the plate on a bases-loaded walk to Shane O'Connell.
Sixth-seeded La Salle (24-28) took advantage of a sloppy fifth inning by the Rams, scoring a pair of runs on just one hit and three Rhode Island miscues to even things up at two apiece.
However, Rhody reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the frame. Mike LeBel drew a leadoff walk, took second on a wild pitch and advanced to third on a sac-bunt by O'Connell. Pat Fortunato was then walked before Pat Quinn singled to left to drive in LeBel and move Fortunato to second. Derek Gardella then delivered a pinch-hit single to plate Fortunato and Landi followed with an RBI sac-bunt that scored Quinn and put the Rams ahead 5-2.
Mike Bradstreet allowed just two hits over the next four innings to finish off the win.
Inside the Box Score
- URI is now 4-0 when facing La Salle at the Atlantic 10 Championship.
- Mike Bradstreet went the distance for URI to improve to 8-5 on the season. He struck out six, did not issue a walk and allowed zero earned runs over nine complete innings.
- Four different La Salle pitchers combined to issue six walks while allowing nine hits on the night.
- URI sent 10 different players to the plate and each reached at least once via hit or walk.
- Pat Quinn and Joe Landi each collected a hit, a run and an RBI, while Derek Gardella was 1-for-1 with a run-scoring single in his pinch-hit at-bat.
- Mike LeBel doubled, was walked twice and scored a run while Jeff Roy and Kevin Stenhouse each had a pair of hits.
- Joey Ravert had two of the Explorers' five hits on the day.
- Relief pitcher Shawn O'Neill was charged with the loss, giving up three runs (all earned) on four hits and four walks over 1.2 innings of work.
"Bradstreet went out there and gave us another gutsy performance. He didn't have his best stuff but he went out there and competed his butt off like he usually does. Quinn and Gardella also came up with a few big knocks late in the game, especially Gardella. That's not easy to do - come off the bench as a pinch-hitter, against a lefty, and stay on top of the ball to hit it the other way. He's been working hard, so to see him come through in a big spot like that - its good stuff." - Rhode Island head coach Jim Foster
Rhode Island returns to action on Thursday afternoon when it takes on #2 Charlotte in the winner's bracket, at 1:30 p.m.
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Conaty Park (Smithfield, R.I.)
Bill Beck Field (Kingston, R.I.)