MALIBU, Calif. – The Saint Joseph’s baseball team dropped its series finale on Sunday afternoon, falling to Pepperdine, 9-5, at Eddy D. Field Stadium. Senior Brian Lau hit his second home run in as many days, while senior Cal Jadacki hit one of his own and drove in two runs as well.
After a pair of scoreless frames to start the day, Hawk starter Tim Brennan ran into trouble with two outs in the bottom of the third. Two singles and a hit batsman loaded the bases for Matthew Kanfer, who drew a walk to score the game’s first run. Ben Rodriguez was then hit by a pitch to double the lead before bases-clearing double from Austin Bernard gave the Waves a 5-0 lead.
Saint Joseph’s (0-3) got one back in the fourth as Jadacki went deep to right to lead off the frame.
Pepperdine (3-0) extended the lead in the bottom half, however, as a single and double chased Brennan from the game with nobody out. Matt Crowder then followed with a double of his own before Quincy McAfee’s sacrifice fly made it a 7-1 game.
Singles by Taylor Boyd and Peter Sitaras and a walk by Marc Giacalone loaded the bases in the top of the fifth, but after a walk to Jadacki scored Boyd, Micahel Mahony came on in relief to escape the jam and keep the Hawks at bay.
In the bottom of the seventh, a walk, an error, and a passed ball extended the Waves’ lead to 8-2, but Dominic Cuoci led off the eighth with a single and Lau followed with a two-run shot to left to get the Hawks within four.
Crowder led off the bottom of the eighth for the Waves and struck out, but reach on a wild pitch by Lau. Three batters later, an RBI single by Kanfer pushed the lead to five, but Lau was able to fan Bernard and Brandon Caruso to end the inning and limit the damage.
The Hawks got one back in the bottom of the ninth after a pair of errors put runners on second and third for pinch hitter Tim Johnson, who lofted a sacrifice fly to right to bring home Deon Stafford, Jr., and close out the scoring.
Austin Gehle was credited with the win, allowing two runs on three hits in two and a third innings of relief. Brennan took the loss for Saint Joseph’s.
The Hawks return to the diamond on Friday in Norfolk, Virginia, when they meet Kentucky in the Old Dominion Tournament. First pitch is set for noon.