UCF Baseball Defeats Dartmouth 16-1 in Series Opener

ORLANDO – The UCF baseball team started off the weekend with an offensive explosion, as they defeated Dartmouth, 16-1. The Knights hit five home runs, including a grand slam by freshman Drew Faurot, for the most in a single game since opening night against Siena. Faurot now has six home runs on the year and is tied for third on the team with Lex Boedicker.

Starting pitcher Ruddy Gomez followed last Friday's shut down outing with another dominant performance, striking out 12 batters in six innings. Gomez set a career high in strikeouts in back-to-back performances, as he struck out 11 batters in his previous outing against Troy. With 29.1 innings pitched in five starts on the season, Gomez has a 3.07 ERA. 

Tom Josten was first on base for the Knights, drawing a walk with one away in the bottom of the first. Andrew Sundean opened the scoring with an RBI single that plated Josten. Sundean, who has recorded an RBI in each of the three previous games, went 3-for-5 from the plate, with three runs scored, and an RBI. A wild pitch scored Ben McCabe who was on base from a single.

The first of the Knights' five home runs came courtesy of Nick Romano. On an 0-2 count, Romano blasted the ball over the left field wall, driving in Sundean and Josten, both of whom singled. Romano's fourth home run of the season was his second three-run homer of the week.

The Big Green were able to get on the board in the top of the fourth. Ivan Hoyt hit a rocket to shortstop that scored Elliot Krewson, for their lone run of the game.

The Knight's home run barrage continued during the fifth inning. Lex Boedicker's sixth of the year extended the lead to 8-1, driving in Romano and Sundean. In the bottom of the sixth, John Rhys Plumlee hit a solo shot for his fourth of the year, and Faurot hit the first grand slam of his career later in the inning. The seven-run sixth was the Knights' third consecutive game with a five or more runs scored in a single inning, bringing the score to 15-1.

The final run of the night came off the bat of Ryan Taylor, who made a noisy first hit of the year with his second career home run. The final score was 16-1.

Two pitchers made their season debut for the Knights. Julian Balzer, a left-handed sophomore, pitched the eighth inning and struck out a batter. Kris Sosnowski also struck out a batter in the ninth inning, going three up, three down to seal the victory for UCF. Sosnowski, a redshirt freshman, made his collegiate debut after missing his true freshman season due to Tommy John surgery.

The Knights look to extend their win streak to 4 games tomorrow as they face the Big Green again at 12 PM.