SAINT LOUIS - [BOX SCORE] Saint Louis University Baseball trailed through five innings, but took advantage of its opportunities in the sixth. After plating three runs in the sixth, the game came down to a diving catch in right center field by Jake Garella to hand the Billikens a 3-2 victory on Wednesday.
Saint Louis (22-9, 8-1 A-10) had to be patient at the plate after a non-traditional run came home early in the game to give Bradley a lead in the second inning. The Billikens had thought they had collected the third out of the inning on a ball that glanced off the pitcher’s mound. That ball was collected by Alex King, who threw the runner out at first, but the ball was ruled dead by the field umpire at second after he ruled that it had hit him in the process of King fielding the grounder. The result, with the bases loaded, was that the batter and all runners advanced, which scored the first run of the game.
The Billikens had four hits entering the sixth, but an RBI triple from Garella began the domino effect that lead to a big inning for the team in blue. Carter Hanford followed with a walk before Nick Reeser singled-in a run of his own to give his team a 2-1 lead.
Cole Dubet got in on the action in the sixth inning as well. The second baseman drove-in Hanford on a single through the right side and extended the lead to 3-1. It was this run, however, that became the difference.
Charlie Sheehan went four and two-thirds innings and allowed no runs and just two hits, but the win went to Nick Logusch. The freshman tossed just a third of an inning, but got the final out in the top of the sixth to net his first collegiate win of his career.
Bradley was able to manufacture a run in the eighth thanks to a hit batsman and a two-out single to right field, but that was the extent of the damage in the inning.
The Braves, however, put a scare into the crowd at the Billiken Sports Center in the ninth. A pair of singles put the tying run at second base as Luke Sommerfeld was called upon to get the final two outs of the game. The senior got Luke Mangieri to fly out to right to put the game in Andrew Ivelia’s hands.
The Bradley second baseman took one strike in his at-bat before belting a ball into the gap in right center field which looked as if it would at least tie the game. It was Garella, however, that ended the threat with what could be the play of the year for the Billikens. The sophomore dove at full speed and made a spectacular catch as he sprawled parallel to the ground to preserve the win for the home team.
Garella recorded two hits and an RBI in the game while Reeser went 3-4 at the plate with and RBI of his own. Perhaps more important, however, was the continued ability for the Billikens to rack-up doubles. Saint Louis recorded three in the game and entered play on Wednesday ranked first in the Atlantic 10 and 33rd in the nation in total doubles with 63. The Billikens now have 66 on the year.
Saint Louis will now head out on a five-game road swing beginning on Friday in Dayton against the Flyers in a doubleheader.