The LIU Post baseball team has won six consecutive games to catapult it above the .500 mark with a record of 13-10. The Pioneers swept a double-header against Queens College on March 24th, and the following day, the Pioneers beat Queens again by a score of 2-1. Later in the week, the Pioneers won both of their out-of-conference games, as they knocked off Dominican College 5-4 and defeated Caldwell College 5-2. LIU remained perfect in East Coast Conference play when it cruised to an 11-6 victory over Mercy College.
In the game on the road against Dominican on March 27th, Pioneers’ freshman starting pitcher Joey Arena went seven strong innings, allowing two runs and striking out seven batters, but did not get enough run support to qualify for a win. Although junior pitcher Kevin Chenicek allowed two runs in relief, he picked up the win, and junior pitcher Anthony Zapulla picked up his second save of the season.
The Pioneers started the game by scoring three runs in the first inning with three different players driving in runs. Sophomore centerfielder Rich Maccarone, junior right fielder Gabriel Santos, and freshman third baseman Anthony Brunetti all had RBIs to help the Pioneers jump to an early 3-0 lead.
The Pioneers controlled the game until the eighth inning, when the Chargers tied it up with two runs in the inning to make it a 4-4 game. In the ninth inning, the Pioneers scratched out a run to break the tie, as Maccarone hit a sacrifice fly to drive in junior second baseman Angel Pimentel.
The Pioneers continued their hot stretch at home two days later when they beat Caldwell College 5-2 behind the solid pitching efforts of senior Glen Hudson and junior Rafael Martinez. Hudson went five innings while striking out nine batters for his first win of the campaign, while Martinez garnered his first save, going the final four innings and allowing only one hit in relief.
The big hit in the game came in the third inning when the Pioneers were trailing 1-0. Senior catcher Matt Simone cleared the bases with a three-run triple, giving the Pioneers a 3-1 lead. Pimentel gave LIU an insurance run in the sixth inning with an RBI double, and the Pioneers did not look back.
In their next game on Friday, March 30th, the Pioneers had an offensive explosion, scoring 11 runs on 14 hits as they defeated ECC rival Mercy College. Sophomore pitcher Mike Eckerle notched his second win of the season as he went two innings of scoreless relief. The Pioneers had big games from several players at the plate, including Pimentel, who went 3-6 and drove in five runs. Maccarone continued his clutch hitting, as he went 3-5 from the dish and crossed the plate three times. Also, sophomore outfielder Vincent Iacono was perfect at the plate, going 3-3 while driving in three runs.
The Pioneers’ next game is an ECC battle on the road against Molloy College (8-15) on Wednesday, April 4th, at 3:00 p.m.