Tribe’s offense shines during 15-1 win against Hofstra

COURTEST PHOTO // TRIBE ATHLETICS Senior third baseman Ben Williamson fields a ground ball during the Tribe's Mar. 5 win against Canisius.

Friday, March 17, William and Mary (11-10, 3-3 CAA) won 15-1 against Hofstra (6-12, 2-4 CAA) at University Field in Hempstead, New York. 

The Tribe traveled to Hofstra for a three game series over the course of the weekend. Friday’s game was a decisive victory, with the Tribe taking down Hofstra in just seven innings. Sophomore pitcher Carter Lovasz started for William and Mary and was dominant through 4.2 innings. Lovasz gave up zero runs, with five strikeouts, two walks and allowed just two hits. 

In addition to Lovasz’s outstanding start, William and Mary’s offense was electric. The scoring began in the second inning with senior catcher Max Winters drawing a walk, followed by a single from freshman second baseman Corey Adams. Freshman outfielder Tank Yaghoubi walked to load the bases, then graduate student infielder Cole Ragone drew another walk to score William and Mary’s first run. Senior center fielder Joe Delossantos singled up the middle to knock in two more runs for the Tribe, and the second inning concluded with William and Mary on top 3-0. 

Sophomore shortstop Luca Danos reflected on the key to the Tribe’s success throughout the game.

“It starts with a guy like Carter on the mound who you know is gonna get outs,” Danos said. “Offensively, the key is waiting for good pitches to hit and making the pitcher throw strikes. We’re more than happy taking our walks and hit by pitches.”

Lovasz also stressed the importance of the Tribe’s ability to get on base.

“We were patient in the box and were able to draw a lot of walks and manufacture runs that way,” Lovasz said.

In the top of the third inning, William and Mary tacked on two more runs against Hofstra’s starter, graduate student pitcher Mark Faello, with a double from Winters, an RBI single from sophomore Nick Lottchea and an RBI bunt from Adams. Lovasz shut out Hofstra in the bottom of the third with three consecutive strikeouts.

The Tribe’s scoring carried into the fourth inning with a single from Danos, followed by a double from senior third baseman Ben Williamson to drive in another run. The fourth inning concluded with the Tribe leading 6-0. 

Lovasz started the fifth inning on the mound for the Tribe, but with one out remaining, the team brought in freshman pitcher Owen Pierce, who kept Hofstra scoreless. 

In the sixth inning, William and Mary stayed aggressive on offense, scoring six more runs and expanding upon their lead. Delassantos led off with a base hit, followed by a massive two-run home run by Williamson. Patience in the box proved effective for the Tribe. A hit by pitch for sophomore outfielder Lucas Carmichael and walks from both Winters and Adams loaded the bases.

Carmichael scored on a wild pitch from Hofstra graduate student pitcher Ryan Rue. Then, a double to right center field from Yaghoubi drove in more runs to make the score 11-0. Despite a pitching change from Hofstra, bringing in graduate student Brian Morrell, Danos doubled to left field to bring the score to 12-0 before the side was retired.

Pierce kept Hofstra’s offense to a minimum, allowing just one base hit in the bottom of the sixth. Hofstra was unable to gain any momentum, as Pierce forced senior outfielder Will Kennedy to ground into a double play that ended the inning. 

The seventh inning began with William and Mary capitalizing on walks and hit batters to load the bases. A clutch walk from freshman pinch hitter Charlie Iriotakis scored the Tribe’s 13th run of the game. In the bottom of the inning, Hofstra managed to get on the board with a solo homerun from redshirt junior infielder Zach Bailey. Despite last chance efforts from Hofstra, Pierce still shut down the side. The game concluded at the end of the seventh inning on account of a presumed 10-run rule, with William and Mary on top 13-1.

“It’s big to win on a Friday coming into an opponent’s house. It really sets the tone for the weekend and puts the pressure on those guys,” Danos said. “We’re in the fortunate position to be able to clinch a series win from the reigning champs so that would be huge for us moving forward.”

So far this season, William and Mary has relied on their strong pitching coupled with consistent hitting performances. Williamson has been an offensive powerhouse throughout the season. He was 2-5 on Friday with two walks, a home run and three RBI. Delossantos went 2-4 with two RBIs and Danos was 2-5 with two walks and two RBIs. Lovasz and Pierce combined to allow just one run on the day, with a very comfortable and controlled showing on the mound. 

In an interesting fashion, following the game the coaches realized there is no 10-run rule in CAA play. As a result, the teams finished the game resumed Saturday morning at 10:30 a.m. in the top of the eighth inning. Despite the extra two innings, Hofstra failed to put any more runs on the board, thanks to a solid performance from William and Mary freshman Noah Hertzler on the mound. The Tribe scored two more runs in the top of the ninth to seal their victory, bringing the final score to 15-1. 

Lovasz is optimistic about the team’s trajectory and capability for the rest of the season.

“We have a very talented bunch with some young guys who are filling prominent roles,” Lovasz said. “We are very close to breaking through and showing our full potential. I think if we continue to fight and buy into the team’s process we will continue to see more wins. It’s important not to lay off the gas now.”

William and Mary will take on Monmouth on Friday, March 24 in Williamsburg.


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