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Baseball Notebook – April 13

Apr 13, 2015, 3:17 PM EDT

Towson's Chris Henze

Chris Henze, Towson
So., DH, Elkton, Md./The Tome School
Henze batted .786 (11-14) with four doubles, one homer, six runs scored and 14 RBI in Towson’s 2-1-1 week. He went 4-for-4 with a double and three RBI as the Tigers beat Hofstra 13-8 in the series opener last Friday and was 4-for-5 with two doubles, a homer and a school-record nine RBI as Towson edged the Pride 20-19 in Sunday’s series finale. Henze leads the CAA with a .390 average for the season.

Nick Berger, Northeastern
Sr., RHP, Commack, N.Y./Commack
Berger scattered seven hits over 8.0 shutout innings as Northeastern edged James Madison 1-0 last Friday. The senior right-hander struck out five with no walks and didn’t allow a runner to reach third base. For the season, Berger is 3-3 with a 3.22 ERA.

Mark Grunberg, Towson
Fr., OF, Hagerstown, Md./North Hagerstown
Grunberg batted .444 (8-18) with a double, homer, six RBI and five runs scored in Towson’s four games. He had multiple hits in three of the four contests, including going 3-for-5 with his first career homer and two RBI in a 13-8 win over Hofstra last Friday.


The Cougars, who are ranked #22 by Baseball America, had a 3-1 week, blanking Georgia Southern (11-0) before winning two-of-three over CAA foe Elon. Sophomore Nick Pappas batted .529 with three doubles, a triple and three RBI last week. He was 9-for-14 (.643) in the Elon series. Blake Butler has reached base in 30 consecutive games, while leadoff hitter Ryan Brown has reached base in the first inning of 10 of the past 11 contests. Carl Wise was 4-for-5 with three runs scored vs. GSU and 3-for-5 with two runs scored in Friday’s 11-3 win over Elon. Wise is among the top five nationally in RBI’s per game. Taylor Clarke (7-1) threw a complete game vs. Elon on Friday, allowing three runs and fanning nine. He’s among national leaders with 81 strikeouts in 62.1 innings. Freshman Carter Love gave up just one hit and no runs over 5.0 innings in three relief appearances last week. He struck out eight and issued just one walk.

DELAWARE (13-12, 3-6 in CAA)
The Blue Hens picked up non-conference victories over Delaware State (12-7) and Sacred Heart (9-1) last week. Senior Zach Lopes batted .500 (5-10) and scored three times last week. He’s hit safely in 17 of his last 18 games. Joe Giacchino drove in three runs against DSU, while Brock Niggebrugge tallied three RBI against SHU. Norm Donkin had three hits including his team-best eighth double in the SHU victory and Tyler Powell supplied three hits against Sacred Heart. The Blue Hens’ offense has scored at least eight runs in five straight games. Every UD starter had a hit against DSU and all but one had a hit against SHU. Senior pitcher Adam Davis (3-1) gave up only one run over 7.0 innings and fanned seven against SHU.

ELON (16-18, 7-5 in CAA)
The Phoenix knocked off ACC foe N.C. State (7-5) and captured the middle game of their three-game set with first-place CofC last week. Elon snapped the Cougars’ 10-game CAA winning streak with a 4-1 triumph on Saturday. Michael Elefante (3-0) allowed just one run on four hits over 6.0 innings and relievers Nick Beaulac, Chris Hall and Joe McGillicuddy combined for three shutout frames. Ryan Cooper smacked a two-run homer in the win. He’s batting .364 for the season and is second in the league with 47 hits. James Venuto went deep twice last week, including a solo shot in the NCSU victory. His five homers are tied for the 2nd-most ever for an Elon freshman. Casey Jones has now reached base safely in 18 consecutive games.

HOFSTRA (11-19, 3-9 in CAA)
The Pride posted a 2-3 week, defeating NYIT (7-3) and getting a Saturday win (5-4) in their three-game series with Towson. Hofstra batted .340, averaged over 8.0 runs per game and stole 19 bases last week. David Leiderman paced the attack, batting .417 with three doubles, 12 RBI and four stolen bases. He was 4-for-5 with four RBI in Friday’s opener with TU and went 4-for-7 with a career-high five RBI on Sunday. Brian MacDonald also had a huge week, hitting .563 with a pair of doubles and four RBI. Freshman Steven Foster batted .389 for the week and had multiple hits in all three games against Towson. The Pride scored 13 runs in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings against Towson on Sunday. It’s believed to be the highest-scoring 9th in school history. Bowie Matteson recorded his third save of the season vs. Towson on Saturday.

JAMES MADISON (12-21, 2-10 in CAA)
The Dukes went 0-4 on the road last week, falling 14-1 at nationally ranked Virginia before dropping three CAA games by a total of four runs at Northeastern. JMU got a great pitching peformance by junior Aaron Hoover in Friday’s 1-0 setback at NU as he gave up just one run on six hits over 8.0 innings and struck out five. Outfielder Josh Wyatt made his first start since April 1 in Saturday’s 3-2 loss to the Huskies and went 3-for-4 with a run scored. He hit .500 (4-8) for the week. Brett Johnson was 2-for-5 in Sunday’s 7-5 loss, extending his hitting streak to nine games and his on-base streak to 16 games. Freshman Michael Sciorra had a 2-for-4 effort with an RBI at NU on Sunday. Reliever Brandon Withers didn’t allow a hit and struck out four over 2.0 innings on Saturday.

UNCW (25-8, 8-1 in CAA)
The Seahawks are ranked #25 by D1Baseball this week after going 4-0, including a CAA sweep of William & Mary that increased their winning streak to seven. UNCW batted .319 as a team while limiting foes to a .219 average. Offensively, Luke Dunlap hit .462 with two doubles and six runs scored. Dunlap and Steven Linkous each had three hits and scored three times in Friday’s 10-1 win over the Tribe. Kennard McDowell had five hits in the W&M series. Senior Jordan Ramsey picked up a win and a save last week, allowing just one hit and striking out five over 4.0 innings. He tops the CAA with seven saves this season. Nick Monroe (1.64) and Ryan Foster (1.80) both have ERA’s under 2.00 over the past 10 games. The Seahawks rallied for three runs in the 8th and then turned a bases-loaded double play in the 9th in Sunday’s 6-5 triumph. It was UNCW’s seventh consecutive win in a one-run game.

NORTHEASTERN (14-20, 7-5 in CAA)
The Huskies rebounded from non-conference setbacks at UConn and Boston College by sweeping their three-game CAA series from James Madison. NU got outstanding starting pitching against the Dukes. Senior Nick Berger scattered seven hits and fanned five over 8.0 shutout innings in Friday’s 1-0 win. In Saturday’s 3-2 victory, Dustin Hunt gave up only four hits and no earned runs over 7.0 innings and struck out eight. NU didn’t allow a walk in either game and both games were completed in under two hours. Aaron Civale earned his third and fourth saves of the year on Friday and Sunday vs. JMU. Offensively, Michael Foster batted .286 for the week and was 3-for-5 with three runs scored in Sunday’s 7-5 win over JMU. He also drove in the game’s only run on Friday. NU has won its first six home conference games for the first time since 1994.

TOWSON (9-23-1, 4-8 in CAA)
The Tigers battled to a 13-13 tie against George Mason before winning two-of-three in their CAA series at Hofstra. Towson’s offense scored 50 runs on 61 hits in the four games. Sophomore Chris Henze batted .786 (11-14) with four doubles, a homer, six runs scored and 14 RBI. In Sunday’s 20-19 win in the series finale, he went 4-for-5 with two doubles, a homer and a school-record nine RBI. Richie Blosser drove in five runs in Friday’s 13-8 triumph over the Pride. Freshman Mark Grunberg hit .444 (8-18) with his first career homer and six RBI last week. Peter Bowles was 4-for-6 and drove in two and Brady Policelli went 3-for-6 and knocked in three in the tie with Mason. Towson is batting .321 as a team in CAA play.

WILLIAM & MARY (14-18, 6-6 in CAA)
The Tribe was beaten 7-4 at Longwood and then was swept in a three-game CAA series at UNCW. Junior Charley Gould batted .500 (7-14) for the week with two doubles, a homer and four RBI. He ranks third in the CAA with a .370 average, is tied for the league lead with 10 homers and has 37 RBI. Freshman Cullen Large had seven hits over the four games and is second on the team with a .309 average for the year. On the mound, Nick Brown limited UNCW to two runs on seven hits over 7.1 innings and fanned five, but was on the short end of a 5-1 loss on Saturday. Junior Aaron Fernandez made his best start of the year on Sunday, scattering seven hits and not allowing an earned run over 6.0 innings, but didn’t get a decision. The Tribe plays five games against in-state foes this week, facing ODU, Virginia and James Madison.