Stevens Edges Old Westbury in Home Opener

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HOBOKEN, N.J. (February 18, 2019)  – Sophomore Thomas Paulich drove in a run for the second game in a row and classmate Roy Iversen struck out five in his first collegiate start as the Stevens Institute of Technology baseball team won their home opener with a 3-2 non-conference victory over SUNY-Old Westbury at Dobbelaar Field.  

Junior A.J. Falconite worked a leadoff walk from Christian Tessitore (0-1) before advancing to second on a throwing error after a failed pickoff attempt by the pitcher. The Marlboro, New Jersey native advanced once again after senior Donny Gherardi singled to left field. Paulich grounded out to the shortstop in Stevens' third at bat, bringing in Falconite to give the Ducks an early lead. 

Following a scoreless second inning, sophomore J.C. Hanleysingled to second base to bring in junior Patrick Rood, who first reached base on a fielder's choice before advancing on a throwing error followed by a wild pitch. 

The Panthers were unable to get on the board until the sixth inning when Peter Capel singled up the middle, allowing Brandon Wilson to reach home plate. The Ducks answered in the bottom of the sixth after senior Matthew Pasko doubled to right field to bring in freshman pinch runner Sutton Dole and put Stevens up 3-1. 

In the second at bat of the seventh inning, Michael Borsch singled through the right side. Sean Paprocki followed with a double to left field to bring in Borsch and shorten Stevens' lead to one. Iversen (1-0) then struck out the cleanup hitter to cap off his season debut. Sophomore Joseph Deitz relieved the Oakland Park, Illinois native at the mound and struck out Wilson to end the half inning.

Falconite, Gherardi, Hanley, Pasko and freshman Tom James each registered a hit for the Ducks, who improved to 1-1. Paprocki tallied two hits and an RBI for the Panthers, who dropped their first game of the 2019 season.

"Good to get a win in our home opener! Roy gave us a terrific start and then Joey came in and shut the door," exclaimed head baseball coach Kristaps Aldins. " We still are making too many mistakes defensively, but our infield stepped up to make some huge plays today. A couple of double plays by our middle guys and then a pure hustle play with J.C. being exactly where he needed to be, backing up first base and then throwing out the runner attempting to advance. Plays like that are what win baseball games and I am confident we will tidy things up in the weeks to come and start playing some great baseball." 

Old Westbury saw five players tally a hit in their season opener. Defensively, the Panthers were led by Borsch with nine putouts. 

The Ducks were led by sophomore Gannon Kenney-McGowan in the field with his eight putouts, along with six from Hanley. 

Stevens will host Drew University on Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 3 P.M. for their third match up of the 2019 season.

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