Jason Savacool trotted to the pitcher’s mound in hopes to complete the sweep of the Ohio State Buckeyes on a brisk Easter afternoon in College Park.
The sophomore right-hander ran into early trouble in the first inning as he gave up a single, a hit by pitch, and a walk. He was able to get through it though with a ground ball that he quickly tossed over to Maxwell Costes.
Luke Shliger, Matt Shaw, and Nick Lorusso all flew out in the first inning. Chris Alleyne started the day off as Shaw slotted into the two-hole and returned to the field in his shortstop position.
After Troy Schreffler walked and Bobby Zmarzlak was hit in the arm, Ian Petrutz moved them over and Kevin Keister drove them in with a rocket off the outfield wall, giving the Terps a 2-0 lead in the second.
Head Coach Rob Vaughn put Alleyne into center field in the third inning, moving Schreffler into right field.
The Buckeyes put runners on the corners with no outs in Kade Kern and Blayne Robinson in the fourth, but Savacool eased through it with no runs crossing the plate.
In the home half, Costes, Schreffler and Zmarzlak all reached base, prompting a pitching change for Ohio State. Griffan Smith replaced Jacob Gehring after the freshman had trouble against the potent Maryland order.
Keister grounded into a fielder’s choice and avoided the double play with a hustle down to first base, scoring Schreffler. Alleyne, in the nine-hole, then doubled home Zmarzlak and Keister, making it 5-0.
Savacool cruised through the fifth in just six pitches.
Production in the middle of the order continued as Costes doubled and Schreffler walked and Zmarzlak brought them both home with a double.
Keister and Alleyne both reached base safely after two mishaps from the Buckeye defense and Shliger bunted them over. Shaw then crashed a three-run homer barely over the right field wall to make it 10-0.
Ian Petrutz joined in on the action in the seventh as he rolled a ball into right field to score Schreffler. With the bases loaded later in the inning, Alleyne brought home Zmarzlak and Petrutz with another roller into right.
The Terps added on in the seventh with a sacrifice fly from Shliger and an RBI single from Shaw, making it 15-0.
Gavin Stellpflug came in to relieve Savacool after a masterful performance of seven innings, three hits, seven strikeouts, and no runs. Riley Langerman also replaced Shliger behind the plate.
Ohio State got on the board as Zach Dezenzo made his way around the bases on a couple wild pitches.
Ian Petrutz got his first home run as a Terrapin as the freshman dumped one over the wall in the eighth to add onto the lopsided score.
With a 15-run cushion, Matt Orlando came in to close it out. The junior right-hander was able to slam the door shut as Maryland took a 16-1 victory and completed the series sweep.
The baseball gods must love springtime in College Park because it was as beautiful of a day as it could get for the second game in a row when Maryland took on Ohio State at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium on Saturday.
Ryan Ramsey toed the rubber for the Terps with a 7-0 record and 2.28 ERA on the season entering the day.
Marcus Ernst and Zach Dezenzo kicked off Ramsey’s afternoon with two singles and Trey Lipsey moved them up with a bunt. Ernst then scored off a Kade Kern fielder’s choice, putting the Buckeyes on the board early. Kevin Keister put an end to the damage with a beautiful play as he charged inward and fired to Maxwell Costes at first for the out.
Luke Shliger stepped to the plate with a cheer from the crowd as the home team came to bat after a clutch walk-off win the night before. On a 2-2 count, he was drilled in the back and trotted to first base. Chris Alleyne and Nick Lorusso then struck out swinging and Matt Shaw – who came back into the lineup in the designated hitter role – lined out to center.
Ramsey bounced back in the second frame after giving up a single, but notching two strikeouts in a quick session on the hill.
Just like last night, Alleyne put his athleticism on display, this time with a deep liner that he tracked down right in front of the batter’s eye in the third.
Brent Todys singled in the fourth and eventually scored after a fielder’s choice and a throwing error by Jacob Orr, giving Ohio State a two-run lead.
Ohio State tacked on another run in the inning as Josh McAlister roped a ball into left, scoring Archer Brookman and making it a 3-0 ballgame.
Nick Robinson came in to relieve Ramsey with one out in the fifth. The junior southpaw finished his day with three runs on six hits and 81 pitches.
“He’s been out around 100 pitches for a couple of consecutive starts and so we kind of knew coming in we didn’t want to give much over 80 today,” Head Coach Rob Vaughn said on Ramsey. “Just try to give him a little bit lighter weight, but at the same time you’re looking at it like ‘hey, we got a chance to win the series today against Ohio State.'”
The Terps got their first hit of the day in the bottom of the fifth as Troy Schreffler slid safely into second with a leadoff double. Bobby Zmarzlak then picked up right where he left off from last night with a two-run blast, slashing the Ohio State lead to 3-2.
“We’d like to come out here and play as hard as we can,” Schreffler said. “Sometimes it catches on a little bit later than we want to but being able to come out here and just keep barreling the ball, putting the ball in play, eventually it’s gonna find a hole and we’re gonna get it rolling.”
Later in the inning, Alleyne placed down a fantastic bunt that scored Keister and the fifth-year outfielder ended up safe at first with a throwing error. Next batter, Lorusso bunted home Shliger, giving Maryland a 4-3 lead.
Wyatt Loncar relieved Isaiah Coupet, who cruised through the first four innings but ran into trouble in the fifth.
“When a guy’s going like that, you’re just trying to get to the bullpen,” Vaughn said. “Loncar’s got good stuff, but we just we wanted anybody else and we were able to set that inning up and punch through.”
In the seventh, Zach Dezenzo crushed a two-run shot off Robinson to give the Buckeyes the lead again at 5-4. Nigel Belgrave came in to relieve Robinson.
Shliger came to bat in the bottom half and smoked a solo home run to tie up the game at five, prompting a loud applause from the packed stadium.
Vaughn stormed out of the dugout after home plate umpire Brian Marine did not allow an appeal to the third base umpire Eric Loveless on an Alleyne check swing.
The disruption was dissolved early as Lorusso smacked another solo home run for Maryland, giving them the lead at 6-5.
Belgrave stayed in the game for the ninth, looking to seal the deal. With two quick outs, Dezenzo launched a ball a few feet shy of the foul pole, nearly tying the game. But Belgrave was able to slam the door shut with a strikeout, helping Maryland earn another victory.
“I think we played great, we played a great ball game,” Belgrave said. “All I really had to do is throw strikes and trust the defense behind me and they did a great job with that.”
Nick Dean toed the rubber as the sun began to dip in the cloudless sky on a beautiful Friday evening in College Park against the Ohio State Buckeyes.
After Dean cruised through the first inning, Chris Alleyne and Nick Lorusso both reached base and Maxwell Costes drove in Alleyne off a slow ground ball. A couple more ground ball hits by Bobby Zmarzlak and Kevin Keister scored two more runs in the opening frame.
After an early mound visit for the Buckeyes, Jacob Orr struck out with the bases loaded to put an end to the first inning where every Terp came to bat.
When Dean took the mound for the second, Blayne Robinson and Mitchell Okuley hit balls out of the park on consecutive pitches, cutting the Maryland lead to 3-2.
“He [had] a clean first and two quick outs and then jack-jack real quick and they’re right back in that thing,” Vaughn said about Dean. “[He] gives us a chance to win.”
Marcus Ernst and Trey Lipsey both singled in the third and Kade Kern brought home Ernst with a double to the wall, tying the game at three.
In the bottom half, Ian Petrutz recorded his second RBI of the season as he drove in Keister. Ohio State pitcher Nate Haberthier thought he had strike three earlier in the at bat but the home plate umpire felt otherwise.
The Terps turned a 4-6-3 double play as smooth as it could get in the fourth as Orr tossed the ball to Keister who fired over to Costes just in time to beat a sprinting Okuley.
Maryland bats came back hungry again in the fourth as Alleyne and Lorusso singled. Costes hit what should have been an out to shallow center, but Josh McAlister dropped the ball and Alleyne was off the races, giving his team a 5-3 as he athletically slid home safely.
A balk and a groundout later, Nate Karaffa came in to relieve Haberthier after 3.2 innings and five runs.
Without much action in the fifth, Robinson tripled as Alleyne nearly made a sensational catch along the wall, but couldn’t quite hang on. Robinson then scored and Okuley grounded into a fielder’s choice to cut the Maryland lead to 5-4.
Noah Mrotek took the hill for the Terps in the seventh with a one-run lead to face the heart of the Buckeye order. He would escape a jam with a big strike three call on Brent Todys.
Troy Schreffler kicked off the home seventh with a single and a stolen base. Zmarzlak advanced him to third on a fielder’s choice. No runs crossed the plate in the inning, though, as Schreffler was left on third.
Costes fielded a ground ball in the eighth and sharply tossed to Mrotek who covered the bag for the first out. The sophomore right-hander then drilled Okuley on the foot, who then advanced to second on a passed ball. Another pitch got away from Shliger and Okuley moved up to third.
That was enough for Mrotek, who was replaced by Sean Heine. A third passed ball allowed Okuley to score, tying the game at five. McAlister then advanced to third on a fielder’s choice from Ernst. A walk, a bean ball, and another walk gave Ohio State their first lead of the night.
David Falco pitched a smooth ninth inning, setting up the Terps to bat in a one-run situation in the bottom of the inning.
“We showed a ton of grit on Wednesday at James Madison,” Vaughn said. “And a ton of grit tonight, and the best teams I’ve ever coached, you don’t want to play from behind, but they’re not afraid to play from behind.”
Costes walked to lead things off. Schreffler followed with a single over McAlister’s head. Zmarzlak then hammered a ball over the wall in left center for a walkoff three-run homer.
“That was the best feeling ever” Zmarzlak said with a smile on his face.
The scene was set perfectly for Bobby Z, as the team likes to call him, who capped off the night with an incredible comeback with a final score of 8-6.
Entering their third weekend of conference play this season after facing Penn State at home and Minnesota on the road, Maryland takes on the Ohio State Buckeyes for a three-game set in College Park.
The Terps took two of three in both Big Ten weekends so far. They also defeated James Madison on Tuesday, fueling a strong stretch of five wins in their last six games.
Throughout their last six games, Maryland bats have driven in 42 runs, including an 11-run onslaught last Friday against the Golden Gophers. The Terps scored eight times against James Madison on the road earlier this week, as well.
With the team returning home for the first time since April 5, the Terps look to continue their success against conference opponents.
Ohio State Buckeyes (11-18)
The Buckeyes finished last season with a winning record at 22-20, but ended up toward the middle of the Big Ten standings in a season that featured all conference games. They were very streaky throughout the course of the year and Maryland won four of five games against them. The two split a two-game set in Columbus last March and then the Terps swept the Buckeyes in a weekend series at home the following month.
Ohio State got off to a strong start by defeating Marshall and Indiana State twice, the latter of whom Maryland demolished at the LeClair Classic earlier this season but then lost seven consecutive affairs to a plethora of teams. They have not been able to find their rhythm since then, as they have not won more than two games in a row since the opening weekend.
Hitters to Watch:
Ohio State has had a few hitters raking at the plate this year, including Marcus Ernst and Trey Lipsey. Ernst has a slash line of .380/.486/.472. The senior infielder is a machine for singles and has started every game so far this year. Lipsey proposes more of a power threat, slugging .517 on the season with four home runs. Buckeye bats have been relatively impressive and scoring runs has not been any issue for them by any means.
Pitchers to Watch:
Ethan Hammerberg has been a strong bullpen arm for the Buckeyes, sporting a 2.45 ERA in 14 appearances. The 6’5 right-hander has put up zeros most of the days he has come into the game, but has had implosions against Cincinnati, Nebraska, and Michigan State. Jake Johnson is also a reliever to keep an eye on. Hammerberg has been slightly better and Johnson has also had a few major slip-ups this season, but both pitchers provide the Buckeyes with support in the late innings.
Probable Starting Pitcher Matchups
Friday, 6:30 p.m. ET
Jr. RHP Nick Dean (3-1, 3.63 ERA) vs. So. LHP Isaiah Coupet (2-3, 4.58 ERA)
Nick Dean cashed in six strong innings against Minnesota last weekend, earning his third win of the season. He gave up three runs including a home run, but recorded six strikeouts. Dean had very similar numbers the weekend before against Penn State and has been rock solid this year for the Terps.
Isaiah Coupet has not been very consistent this season to say the least. The sophomore dominated against Marshall, UNCW, and Nebraska, but has severely struggled against Texas State, Campbell, West Virginia, and Purdue. His last start came on April 1 against Nebraska where he fired seven innings of one-run ball.
Saturday, 2:00 p.m. ET
Jr. LHP Ryan Ramsey (7-0, 2.28 ERA) vs. So. RHP Nate Haberthier (0-3, 6.29 ERA)
Ryan Ramsey earned another win last weekend at Minnesota and lowered his ERA on the season, making his 2022 campaign even more impressive. The southpaw has only given up five runs over his last five starts and has pitched 32 innings over that span. It is safe to say Ramsey has really found his groove this year and leads Maryland pitchers in the win department.
Nate Haberthier is coming off a start where he gave up three runs to Michigan State in an offensive explosion for his Buckeyes The sophomore has not been able to make it deep into games, as the furthest he has gone came against West Virginia in early March (5 2/3 innings pitched).
Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET
So. RHP Jason Savacool (5-2, 2.68 ERA) vs. Jr. RHP Wyatt Loncar (1-3, 5.40 ERA)
Jason Savacool pitched seven innings against Minnesota last weekend and continues the trend of pitching deep into games. The sophomore right-hander has pitched either seven or eight innings in all but one games started so far this season. He recorded seven strikeouts against the Golden Gophers and gave up three runs.
Wyatt Loncar put up an effective performance last weekend against Michigan State, hurling five innings and giving up only one run in the process. That was one of his best games of the season though, having struggles in numerous games earlier in the season. The 6″6 junior has been inconsistent in both innings pitched and runs allowed.
Maryland baseball returned to Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium today to face the Virginia Commonwealth Rams to kick off a midweek home and home series.
Ryan Van Buren began his first of the season with two quick outs and nearly a third until third baseman Tyler Locklear reached base on an error. He was able to record the third out with no issue, though, sending the Terps to bat.
Chris Alleyne wasted no time in the first inning as he blasted a solo home run over the batter’s eye. Two hitters later, Nick Lorusso did the same, going even further with his long ball.
Virginia Commonwealth starting pitcher Campbell Ellis’ troubles from the first inning lingered into the second as Troy Schreffler Jr. poked a double into right field and Sean Lane reached base on a walk. Ellis had a pitch count of 43 after two innings.
Van Buren gave up the first VCU hit of the day after 2 ⅔ innings as Michael Haydak ripped a double over Bobby Zmarzlak’s head. AJ Mathis then brought him home with a hit himself and Locklear smoked a two-run shot to give the Rams a 3-2 lead.
Alleyne countered in the bottom half of the inning with his second home run of the day, this time from the other side of the plate.
Andrew Johnson came in to relieve Van Buren after 49 pitches. Johnson gave up a solo home run to Connor Hujsak on the first pitch to allow the Rams to take the lead again. He then hit the next batter Devan Barnett.
Barnett stole second base and Johnson threw three straight balls to Marcus O’Malley, prompting Luke Shliger to come out for a visit. O’Malley walked on the next pitch.
Johnson walked Scottie O’Bryan to load the bases. Barnett slid home safely off a sacrifice fly from Haydak to extend the Rams’ lead to 5-3. Johnson was able to fan Mathis to finally conclude the inning.
In the bottom of the fourth, Zmarzlak cranked a solo home run over the wall in left center, bringing Maryland to within one run.
Schreffler and Lane popped consecutive base hits after the Zmarzlak long ball. For Lane, it was his first hit in a Maryland uniform. Jacob Orr moved both teammates into scoring position with a beautifully placed bunt.
Shliger rolled a ball along the first base line to score Schreffler, tying the game at five a piece. Maryland was unable to deal any more damage in the inning.
The next inning, Virginia Commonwealth gained the lead right back as Devan Barnett singled home Logan Amiss. Barnett advanced to second base after a Johnson wild pitch.
Matt Orlando arrived at the mound to pitch the sixth. O’Bryan walked and stole second base. He then made his way to third after Schreffler dropped a pop fly in right field.
Maryland walked the red-hot Locklear to make the bases full, but Lorusso fielded a ground ball to end the inning with zero VCU runs.
The Rams elected Edwin Serrano to pitch the bottom of the sixth with the middle of the Maryland order coming to bat.
With Zmarzlak leading off the inning with a bean ball and Schreffler reaching base on balls, Drew Grace came to the plate with pinch hitting duties. Grace was unsuccessful on the bunt attempt with two strikes and he walked back to the dugout in frustration.
Luke Shliger extended his hit streak to four games as he dumped one into left field to score Zmarzlak and Schreffler to give Maryland a 7-6 lead.
Sean Heine took the mound for the Terps in the seventh. The senior right-hander hurled a clean inning and fired up the stadium after striking out Nic Ericcson for the third out.
Maxwell Costes hit a ball a mile high that had the crowd dead silent as they were waiting for it to land, but Hujsak dropped it and allowed fans to cheer jubilantly as the Maryland first baseman reached base.
Schreffler ripped one off the second base bag and into center field to score Costes and to extend the Maryland lead to 8-6.
Two-way player Nick Lorusso moved from third base to pitcher in the ninth as he looked to get the Terps back in the win column.
Lorusso hit Locklear with the pitch and then walked Hujsak. Head Coach Rob Vaughn decided to throw Will Glock on the hill to close it out after Lorusso put runners on the corners with only one out.
Glock fanned Barnett on three pitches, but walked Ericsson to load the bases. With the lights shining down on the field and the fans rowdy, Glock got O’Malley to dribble a ball to Costes to step on first base to end it.
With the win, Maryland advances to 10-2 on the season and will travel to Richmond, Virginia to play Virginia Commonwealth in the second half of the home and home on Wednesday.
After losing their first two games of the season in the LeClair Classic last weekend, No. 21 Maryland looks to get back on track as they face the VCU Rams in a brief home and home series. The Terps will host the Rams at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium on Tuesday and will play in Richmond, Virginia on Wednesday.
Luke Shliger had a dynamic weekend as he recorded eight hits and swiped a couple bags. The sophomore slugger raised his stat line to .295/.421/.523 on the season and continues to shine in the leadoff spot to a potent Maryland batting order.
“I think it’s back to the drawing board having good at-bats, playing as a team. I think we got a little individual [last] weekend,” Shliger said about the team’s rough last few games. “We had chances to cash in and I think it’s just being selfless today against VCU.”
Jacob Orr had an impressive weekend, as well. Though he has not served as an everyday player, he has five hits in five games and played a key role in the bottom of the order in Greenville, North Carolina.
“I think we faced a little bit of adversity [last] weekend,” Orr said. They didn’t go the way we wanted [them] to, but we got some good experience from it facing adversity and I think it’ll help us in the long run.”
Maryland’s three aces — Nick Dean, Ryan Ramsey, and Jason Savacool — had a tougher time last weekend than they did against Baylor and Campbell, but were still able to keep their team in each ballgame. Logan Ott has started Maryland’s two midweek games this season, so he is expected to get the ball against Virginia Commonwealth. Reliever Will Glock saw plenty of action over the weekend and maintains a 2.45 ERA on the year.
Virginia Commonwealth Rams (3-7)
The Rams concluded last season at the very top of the Atlantic 10 standings with a 38-16 overall record. They went 13-3 in their conference and defeated Saint Joseph’s, Rhode Island, and Dayton to win the Atlantic 10 Tournament. In the NCAA Regional, the Rams beat the Campbell Fighting Campbells in the first game, a ballclub that Maryland swept earlier this season. However, the Rams got blown out by Campbell afterward as well as Mississippi State to end their season. The Rams had a combined slash line of .290/.414/.474 and had a plethora of hitters that swung the bat well all season.
The Rams are having a rough go of it to start their 2022 campaign, as they have lost five of their last six games and are yet to win back-to-back affairs. The only teams they have beaten so far include Lafayette, Longwood, and Princeton – all of whom are severely struggling. The team has incredibly poor offensive statistics so far, while the pitching has been somewhat serviceable. Virginia Commonwealth has only scored six runs in their last five games and they have been shut out twice in the process.
Hitters to Watch
Virginia Commonwealth has a few players that are playing exceptional baseball, despite the lack of support around them. Logan Amiss has 11 hits in 34 at-bats and has reached base in every game. Tyler Locklear provides more of a power threat as he has four long shots to his name. The two have played in every game for the Rams and are leading the team in almost every offensive statistic.
Pitchers to Watch
Chase Hungate has been the best Rams pitcher by far, boasting a 0.75 ERA through 12 innings pitched. Campbell Ellis put up zeros through seven frames against Rider and Longwood, but later struggled against Ole Miss and Lafayette. He has not seen the mound since March 4, so there is a strong chance the Terps will face him at some point in the series. The Rams do not have the best depth compared to other teams the Terps have faced – especially when matched up against teams like Michigan, Indiana State, and East Carolina – the three teams Maryland played in the LeClair Classic.
Starting pitching matchups are to be decided for Tuesday and Wednesday, but Logan Ott has taken the hill against UMBC and Delaware this season. Against the Golden Retrievers, he threw four innings of two-run ball. He gave up three runs through 4 2/3 innings against the Blue Hens the following week. His numbers have been consistent throughout, allowing six hits, one walk, and three strikeouts in both games. The Terps are yet to play two midweek games in the same week this season, so no other starting pitcher on the team has gotten a chance to toe the rubber in these types of matchups.
Entering the final day of the Keith LeClair Classic with one win and one loss, No. 21 Maryland took on the East Carolina Pirates on Sunday in Greenville, North Carolina.
The Pirates eliminated the Terps last June in the NCAA tournament, and today marked their first meeting since.
Just like the previous game against Indiana State, Luke Shliger started the afternoon with a single on the very first pitch. Chris Alleyne then singled and Matt Shaw drove in Shliger on an infield ground ball.
In the bottom of the first, East Carolina leadoff hitter Bryson Worrell singled, but Jason Savacool picked him off at first base. The sophomore pitcher resumed where he left off from his last two starts with a nine-pitch inning.
Shliger continued to drastically raise his batting average this weekend with another single in the second inning and picked up his seventh stolen base of the season afterward.
Savacool ran into some trouble in the second with third baseman Alec Makarewicz and right fielder Carter Cunningham recorded back-to-back singles. They both advanced to scoring position and shortstop Zach Agnos brought one home on a bunt to tie the game at one.
Bobby Zmarzlak grounded into a double play in the third inning to give the Pirates a quick turnaround.
Worrell rocked a two-run homer into the right field seats to give ECU their first lead of the day. Then, after a Lane Hoover walk, a Jacob Jenkins-Cowart single, and a Makarewicz double, Cunningham flew out to center field and Alleyne threw out Makarewicz at third base.
Maryland was able to bring one run back as Maxwell Costes blasted a home run to make it a 5-2 game.
East Carolina starting pitcher Jake Hunter’s day was finished after 49 pitches through three innings. Sophomore right-hander Danny Beal was given the nod to replace Hunter.
With Troy Schreffler Jr. singling through the left side, Drew Grace struck out as Pirates catcher Justin Wilcoxen gunned down Schreffler at second base for a strike ‘em out, throw ‘em out double play.
In the bottom half of the inning, Maryland turned two themselves to allow for a fast fourth inning.
Savacool finally retired the first batter of the inning for the first time in the fifth frame, but gave up a double to Hoover right after. Hoover then tagged up on a fly ball to center field, and after Matt Shaw misplaced the throw, Hoover was able to score and give the Pirates a four-run lead.
Nick Lorusso and Zmarzlak recorded consecutive singles in the top of the sixth with no outs, prompting East Carolina to bring in Skylar Brooks for relief. Jacob Orr then brought home Lorusso with a single.
In the seventh, Maryland loaded the bases without getting any hits, causing East Carolina to elect Ryder Giles to take the mound. However, for the third time in the game, the Pirates escaped a bases loaded jam with a Schreffler pop up to second base.
Savacool finished his day after seven innings of six-run ball. He allowed nine hits and two walks and notched five strikeouts. Five of his six runs were earned.
In the ninth, the Terps went down in order and fell to the Pirates by a final score of 6-3. The East Carolina win was their fifth straight, putting them above the .500 mark for the first time this season. This is only the second Maryland loss of the season, as they are now 9-2.
After suffering their first defeat of the season against Michigan, No. 21 Maryland looked to get back in the win column Saturday against Indiana State in Greenville, North Carolina.
The Terps got off to a quick start on the basepaths. Luke Shliger, coming a double short of the cycle in yesterday’s affair, greeted Sycamore starting pitcher Jack Parisi with a single on the first pitch of the game. Chris Alleyne then recorded a single himself and Nick Lorusso walked on four pitches, but no runs crossed the plate.
Maryland starting pitcher Ryan Ramsey kicked off his third start of the season with a seven-pitch inning against a tough Indiana State top three in Jordan Schaffer, Grant Magill, and Josue Urdaneta.
The second inning would contrast, as Ramsey gave up a solo home run to designated hitter Luis Hernandez, giving Indiana State an early 1-0 lead. Center fielder Sean Ross then doubled to score left fielder Aaron Beck to tally another run.
Alleyne countered in the third inning with a solo home run, his first long ball of the season. In the bottom half, Schaffer stole second base after being hit by a pitch. Magill then singled to put runners on the corners and Urdaneta singled to make it a 3-1 ballgame.
In the same inning, Maryland turned a 6-4-3 double play, but a runner crossed the plate in the process for the fourth Sycamore run of the day. Ramsey then struck out Beck to end an arduous inning for the junior pitcher.
Troy Schreffler Jr. and Jacob Orr both singled after Maxwell Costes got hit by the pitch to load the bases with one out for the Terps in the fourth. Riley Langerman kept the merry-go-round in motion with a single, scoring Costes.
Shliger then hit a sacrifice fly to score Schreffler. Alleyne recorded his third hit of the afternoon as he singled home Orr to tie the game at four.
“We’re extremely confident in the guy that’s up there hitting to do his job and get on base and then pass it on to the next guy,” Schreffler said. “I have full trust in the guys behind me and the guys in front of me and I think as a team that’s really good for us.”
The Terps resumed their bombardment in the fifth as Schreffler poked one just over the outfield wall for a two-run home run. Maryland took a 6-4 lead entering the midway point of the game.
With Jose Cabrera pitching in the sixth, Shliger and Shaw both reached base, but the Terps left them hanging. Ramsey sent the Sycamores down in the bottom half to continue finding his groove.
Lane Miller came in to relieve Cabrera in the seventh after Bobby Zmarzlak notched his first hit of the weekend. Miller put aside Costes, but enabled Schreffler to reach base on a fielder’s choice. Langerman struck out to end the inning after that.
After allowing two one-out base runners in the bottom of the seventh, Matt Orlando came in to relieve Ramsey. Ramsey finished his day after 103 pitches, seven hits, four runs, four walks and four strikeouts.
“The best thing [Ramsey] has done in his three starts this year is he has gotten better as the games have gone on,” Head Coach Rob Vaughn said.
Orlando walked first baseman Diego Gines to juice the bases and walked left fielder Aaron Beck right after to force in a run, making it 6-5 Maryland. Third baseman Randall Diaz later hit a hotshot right at Jacob Orr who put the inning to bed.
Shliger singled to start the eighth and Alleyne followed with a double. Matt Shaw brought them both in with a two-run single. That was enough for Indiana State to call on Raine Richter to succeed Miller.
Heading into the final frame, Schreffler and Zach Martin both got on base via walks. Martin, who is celebrating his birthday today, served as a pinch hitter for Langerman. Schreffler then scored off a Shliger single through the right side, making it 9-5 Terps.
Maryland was not done yet in the ninth. Alleyne hit a sacrifice fly to center field, enabling Martin to score. Shliger came home a few pitches later on a wild pitch. Matt Shaw put the icing on the cake with a solo home run.
“There’s no pressure really on anybody, I think everybody can take over a game, whether it’s Bubba and Luke at the top or Nick, Bob, Max and Troy behind,” Shaw said. “I think all of us work well together.”
Ryan Van Buren came in to close it out for the Terps. He gave up one run as his defense turned a double play, but was able to close the door, giving Maryland a 12-6 victory over Indiana State.
“They really compete with two strikes, they’re pretty gritty,” Vaughn said about Indiana State. “So for [Ramsey] to go up and just continue to get better and get us deep into the game to where we only had to go Orlando [and] Van Buren to finish that thing was huge for us today.”
On a beautiful Friday afternoon in Greenville, North Carolina, No. 21 Maryland took on the Michigan Wolverines to kick off the Keith LeClair Classic.
The Terps put Michigan starter Cameron Weston to work early in the first inning. Luke Shliger swiped third base to raise his stolen base count to six in the early season, but Maryland stayed off the scoreboard.
With Maxwell Costes reaching on an error and Jacob Orr snapping a single in the second inning, Shliger sliced a ball into left field that found its way over the fence for a three-run home run, his second long shot of the season.
Maryland starting pitcher Nick Dean plowed through the Michigan batting order in the first and second innings, allowing one base runner and notching three punchouts. The third frame posed a greater threat as Michigan loaded the bases, but Dean was able to work his way out of the jam scoreless.
In the fourth inning, Maryland was not quick enough to turn a double play after a single by left fielder Tito Flores. However, they successfully turned two on the very next batter to provide Dean with a fast inning. Michigan would counter in the bottom half by turning a double play themselves off an Orr ground ball.
Reaching the halfway point of the game, Dean continued to pick up right where he left off. After five innings of work, the junior limited Michigan to two hits, setting up Maryland for the bottom of the fifth.
With a single in the first inning, a home run in the second, and a triple in the fifth, Shliger put Clark-LeClair Stadium on cycle watch. Chris Alleyne would allow him to score after grounding out to second base.
“I was just trying to get a barrel out there because the [players] behind us can kind of change the game in one swing. So I wasn’t really thinking about it,” Shliger said after coming just short of the cycle.
Michigan thought an inside pitch hit designated hitter Matt Frey in the top of the sixth, but after the play went under review, the pitch was ruled a ball. Frey would loop one into center field for a double two pitches later. The next batter Jimmy Obertop was hit by the pitch – for real this time – initiating a mound visit from Maryland Assistant Coach Mike Morrison.
Dean finally gave up his first run of the season after Flores doubled, scoring Obertop. Head Coach Rob Vaughn prompted reliever Will Glock to replace Dean as a result. Glock would allow a run-scoring fielder’s choice to cut the deficit to 4-2.
Dean finished his third start of the season after 5 1/3 innings with four hits, two earned runs, three walks, and four strikeouts. He finally conceded his first run of the year after 19 1/3 innings pitched.
“[We had] a four-run lead in the sixth and you feel pretty good about where you’re at with Nick Dean on the mound,” Vaughn said. “We just didn’t quite finish, and it’s good, we need to face some adversity.”
Michigan reliever Walker Cleveland replaced Weston after Weston gave up four runs through five frames. Cleveland hit Costes, the first batter he faced, and gave up a double to Orr. Noah Rennard came in for Cleveland that same inning to face Sean Lane, who served as a pinch hitter for Kevin Keister.
In the top of the seventh inning, Riley Bertram hit a two-run shot after a Jack Van Remortel walk to even up the ballgame at four a piece. Glock got the next two Wolverines to fly out and one other to ground out. The heart of the Maryland order went down 1-2-3 in the bottom half.
Coming off the bench was Joey Velasquez who toppled a three-run blast off the foul pole to give Michigan a 7-4 lead in his first plate appearance of the season. The home run capped off seven unanswered runs for Michigan.
“We’ve had some bounces that have gone our way and that’s what you have when you win eight straight, but they hit a three-run jack off the foul pole today,” Vaughn said. “I think the reality is whether things are good, bad or indifferent, we have to do a great job of evaluating.”
Andrew Johnson took the mound in the ninth for the Terps. Despite a first base error, Maryland got through the frame unscathed, and would have one final chance to mount a comeback in the bottom of the ninth.
Willie Weiss came in to pitch the ninth for Michigan and got the save, allowing the Wolverines to defeat the Terrapins by a final score of 7-4.
“Today’s game has zero bearing on tomorrow unless we let it so we got to do a good job and I’m not worried about this group coming with a really good mindset and being ready to go tomorrow,” Vaughn said.
Cruising into the weekend with a spotless 8-0 record, No. 21 Maryland will face three different teams in Greenville, North Carolina. Matchups include Michigan (6-3) on Friday, Indiana State (5-2) on Saturday, and East Carolina (3-5) on Sunday. The games are part of the LeClair Classic and will be played at Clark-LeClair Stadium.
The Terps rattled off a season-high 14 runs in their destruction of Delaware on Tuesday. Troy Schreffler Jr. continued his blazing start with his first home run of the season and had a four-hit day. Nick Lorusso pitched the seventh and eighth innings while also managing to get two hits. Maxwell Costes smashed a two-run shot to eventually blow the game wide open.
While the offense is coming off a monstrous couple games, the pitching has held up its end, as well. Logan Ott got three strikeouts, one walk, and three earned runs through 4.2 innings in his start against the Blue Hens while Will Glock slammed the door shut. Maryland was able to limit Delaware to four runs as they capped off a blowout at Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium.
Maryland’s three studs are expected to pitch this weekend in Nick Dean, Ryan Ramsey, and Jason Savacool. The three have given up a combined six earned runs and have fanned 40 batters in 42 innings of dominant baseball. All three starters have a 2-0 record after getting wins against Baylor and Campbell.
Michigan Wolverines (6-3)
The Wolverines finished the 2021 season one game behind the Terps with a 27-17 record. The most at-bats they faced of any team was Maryland, so the two have plenty of experience facing each other from last season’s all-Big Ten play. Michigan had the upper edge over Maryland, taking the season series 3-2.
Michigan has had a potent offense so far this year. In 326 combined plate appearances, the team has 96 hits, 27 doubles, and 11 home runs. They have come out on top in five of their last six games entering the weekend.
Hitters to Watch
The Wolverines have six players hitting over .300 and five of them have an OPS over .900. Elliott Clark and Joe Stewart lead the team in these categories, as well as home runs, while Ted Burton and Matt Frey trail right behind them.
Pitchers to Watch
Cameron Weston is scheduled to take the mound against the Terps. He has a 4.50 ERA and has allowed 15 hits through 10 innings so far this season, but his numbers were much better last season where posted a 2.81 ERA through 83.1 innings. The 6-2 junior pitched against Texas Tech and Seton Hall in February, getting a no decision in the former and the win in the latter.
Indiana State Sycamores (5-2)
Indiana State finished in second place in the Missouri Valley Conference last season after going 31-21. The Sycamores did not face the Terrapins at all, nor any of the other Big Ten teams. After a strong regular season, they would eventually fall to the No. 2 Georgia Tech twice to exit the NCAA Tournament.
The Sycamores are riding a three-game winning streak into this weekend with two blowout victories against Minnesota and one against Merrimack. They have gotten a fair share of Big Ten play so far with not only two games against Minnesota, but also two against Ohio State in which they lost both.
Hitters to Watch
Jordan Schaffer has been leading the way for the Indiana State offense. The redshirt senior has a slash line of .414/.528/.586 so far and has 12 hits in 29 plate appearances. He is also on a 19-game hitting streak dating back to last season. Diego Gines, redshirt sophomore, has also been consistently getting on base with 11 hits and five walks in 27 at-bats.
Pitchers to Watch
Matt Jachec has been one of the best pitchers for Indiana State, notching a 1.35 ERA in 13.1 innings pitched. He also has an impressive 13 strikeouts and no walks to his name in his two wins. Aside from Jachec, pitching has somewhat struggled – every other pitcher that has tossed at least six innings has an ERA well over the 4.00 mark.
East Carolina Pirates (3-5)
East Carolina had a terrific 2021 season as they boasted a 44-17 record. Their 20-8 performance in the American Athletic Conference allowed them to secure a first place finish. They beat Maryland in the Greenville Regional last June by a final score of 9-6, but would eventually lose to Vandervilt twice in the Nashville Super Regional.
Unlike last season’s record, the Pirates have gotten the short end of the stick so far, entering the weekend with a 3-5 record. They got swept by Bryant University to kick off the year, but are 3-2 since then. They defeated Campbell 10-3, a team that Maryland swept in a three-game set and outscored 16-3.
Hitters to Watch
The Pirates have quite a few players that are clicking offensively in Lane Hoover, Justin Wilcoxen, Cowart Jenkins, and Alec Makarewicz. All of whom have above-average batting averages, on-base percentages, and slugging percentages. The team as a whole is coming off 17 runs in their last two games.
Pitchers to Watch
Josh Grosz has been lighting it up in the bullpen with 12 strikeouts and a 1.12 ERA in eight innings of work. He has only given up four hits in 28 batters faced. Jake Hunter has started both Sunday matchups for East Carolina this season, so if he goes again this Sunday, the Terps can expect a strong starting pitcher. He has given up only one run in 7.1 innings in his two starts, but has not gotten a win yet this year.
Probable Starting pitching matchups:
Friday, 12:00 p.m. ET
Jr. RHP Nick Dean (2-0, 0.00 ERA) vs Jr. RHP Cameron Weston (1-0, 4.50 ERA)
Nick Dean has delivered seven shutout frames against Baylor and Campbell, giving up just seven hits across those 14 innings. Dean has yet to give up a run this season and opposing hitters are only faring a .146 batting average against him.
Cameron Weston has not been particularly fantastic in his first two starts. He gave up three earned runs to Texas Tech and two to Seton Hall, but was able to sneak out wins in both of tose games. He has five walks and 13 strikeouts in ten innings of work so far this year.
Saturday, 12:00 p.m. ET
Jr. LHP Ryan Ramsey (2-0, 2.08 ERA) vs TBD
Ryan Ramsey pitched very effectively in his first start to the season against Baylor, but was even more impressive the following week against Campbell. Through his two starts, the New Jersey native has allowed just nine hits and three earned runs in 13 innings.
Sunday, 3:30 p.m. ET
So. RHP Jason Savacool (2-0, 1.80 ERA) vs Fr. RHP Jake Hunter (0-0, 1.23 ERA)
Jason Savacool dominated against Baylor to begin his sophomore season by easing through eight innings of three-run ball (two earned). He continued his incredible performance against Campbell as he gave up his four hits and earned his second victory of the season.
Jake Hunter has been very serviceable for East Carolina in his two starts. He has a 1.23 ERA in a combined 7.1 innings and has given up four hits in those two games. He did not receive a win or loss in either of his starts, though the team won one of them and lost the other.