Hempstead, NY – Nick Kozlowski, making his first start in more than a month, went 6 2/3 innings and allowed three runs on seven hits and struck out five as Hofstra won a Colonial Athletic Association series with a 7-3 victory in Sunday’s rubber game.
Kozlowski (3-0) has pitched well out of the bullpen since his last start against Farmingdale State on March 13, but was called on for the spot start. The red-shirt sophomore responded, limiting the second-ranked offense in the nation to just three hits and one run over the first six innings before surrendering four hits and two runs in the seventh. Brett Schreiber pitched the final 2 1/3 innings and allowed no runs on three hits with four strikeouts.
The Pride scored four times in the first as Jared Hammer drove in Robbie Cafiero with a single and, following a walk to Matt Reistetter that loaded the bases, Joe Perez walked to force in the second run. After Delaware starter Matt Soren recorded the second out, TJ Ehrsam hit a grounder to third that should have ended the inning, but EJ Stoltzfus’ throw was up the line and could not be handled by Jimmy Yezzo at first. The throwing error allowed two runs to score.
Hofstra would add three more runs in the third as Hammer was hit by a Soren pitch to start the inning and moved to second on a wild pitch. Reistetter then singled to short with Hammer remaining at second. The pair moved up on another wild pitch and Perez drove in one run with a single up the middle. Taylor Stuart drove in Reistetter with a ground out to third. Another ground out moved Perez to third and Soren then struck out Austin Nyman for what would have been the third out. But catcher Ty Warrington dropped the third strike and Nyman reached first to keep the inning going. On the next pitch, Nyman and Perez executed a double steal to give the Pride a 7-0 lead.
The Blue Hens would get to Kozlowski in the fifth as D.J. Long led off with a double, moved to third on an infield single and scored on a double play. Delaware added two more runs in the seventh as three consecutive two-out singles loaded the bases. That ended Kozlowski’s day and Schreiber came on and gave up an infield single to Brock Niggebrugge that scored one run and then walked Andrew Burgess to force in a second run. But he would strikeout Joe Giacchino to end the threat.
Schreiber would pitch out of trouble again in the eighth as he had runners at first and third with no outs. But the junior struck out Nick Ferdinand, then got an out at home on a fielder’s choice and induced a fly out to end the inning unscathed.
Kenny Jackson finished the day with two hits for the Pride, while Perez had a hit and two RBIs.
Soren (3-2) took the loss for the Blue Hens, allowing seven runs (four earned) on six hits in four innings of work. Ken Fetchko pitched will in relief, allowing just one hit over four innings. Yezzo, Long, Stoltzfus and Tyler Powell each had two hits for Delaware
Hofstra is back in action Wednesday afternoon at 3 p.m. when the Pride host LIU Brooklyn at University Field.