By Jimmy Perrino
Seemingly every time he takes the mound for Maryland (10-4), Mike Shawaryn (4-0) is the story. Today was no exception as he bounced back from his worst start of the season to pitch seven dominant innings. Shawaryn did not allow a run, struck out 11, and only allowed one Princeton (1-7) base runner to even reach third base.
The first two and a half innings of this game led us to believe we were going to have a pitchers duel on our hands. However, in the bottom of the third inning, that changed. Anthony Papio took Chad Powers (0-3) deep to lead it off for the Terps. It was Papio’s third homer of the year. A Kengo Kawahara bunt single and a Brandon Lowe walk set up Kevin Smith, who drove a run in with a single. Kevin Martir also singled before Jose Cuas opened up the game with a bases clearing double, giving the Terps a 5-0 lead.
It got no better in the middle innings for the Tigers. They gave up a run in the fourth inning on a Brandon Lowe sac-fly. In the fifth, high school teammates Martir and Cuas led off the inning with back-to-back singles. Nick Cieri drove them both in with a sharp liner down the first base line. Papio just missed a second home run, driving a ball deep to the wall, placing Maryland runners at second and third. After Biondic reached on a dropped third strike, Powers walked Kawahara, his last batter of the day, to load the bases. His replacement Nick Donatiello proceeded to bounce a pitch by catcher Tyler Servais, scoring a tenth Terp run. In the sixth, walks by Cuas and Tim Lewis were rewarded as Papio and Biondic singled them in, respectively, extending Maryland’s lead to 12-0.
Papio finished the game with four hits, scored four runs and drove two in, including a home run. Cuas finished the day with three RBIs on two hits and scored two runs himself.
By the latter innings, most of the Maryland starters were able to take the remainder of the day off. Many of the substitutes were underclassmen making their Maryland baseball debuts. Freshman southpaw Jack Piekos made his first appearance for the Terrapins and needed only six pitches to throw a scoreless eighth inning. John Mazza also made his debut, lofting a sac-fly on the first collegiate pitch he had ever seen. Zack Jankarski scored a run on his first Maryland plate appearance after reaching on a walk. The 6’6” Andrew Green made his debut in the ninth, throwing a 1-2-3 inning to finish the game in tremendous fashion.
The series will continue tomorrow night at 7pm. Maryland freshman Willie Rios (0-0, 4.26) will get his second career collegiate start. He will oppose Princeton sophomore Keelan Smithers (1-1, 7.71). The game will be played at Harford CC in Bel Air, MD and can be heard here on the Maryland Baseball Network.