May 6, 2011
Bowling Green, Ky. - The Florida Atlantic University baseball team opened a Sun Belt Conference road series with a victory, scoring a 4-2 triumph over Western Kentucky University on Friday night at Nick Denes Field in Bowling Green, Ky. The win keeps the Owls in second place in league and still in contention to defend last year's regular-season championship.
FAU improves to 27-17 on the season and has a 14-8 league mark. The host Hilltoppers fall to 27-19 overall and 12-10 in conference action. The two teams will resume the series on Saturday, starting at 1 p.m., in a contest being televised as part of the Sun Belt Network on Comcast (CSS).
Florida Atlantic grabbed an early 1-0 lead in the second inning when junior outfielder Alex Hudak scored on a sacrifice fly out to left field by senior designated hitter Eddie Cassidy. Hudak began the rally with a one-out single to center field.
An inning later, FAU increased its advantage to 2-0 as a RBI groundout by senior second baseman Raymond Church plated junior catcher Mike Albaladejo.
The visitors kept the scoring going in the fourth inning when Cassidy lined a single to center field that scored senior shortstop Nick DelGuidice, who hit his record-setting 56th double of his career. Later, senior outfielder Andy Mee hit a sacrifice fly out to center field to score Cassidy.
Junior starting pitcher Ryan Garton got out jams throughout the night to pick up the victory. The right hander scattered seven hits in six productive innings. Garton improved to 4-3 on the season, allowing one earned run of the two surrendered.
Junior reliever Ahmed Garcia allowed only two hits in two scoreless innings of relief, while fellow junior Hugh Adams recorded his eighth save by tossing a perfect ninth inning.
WKU scored both of its runs on a double by Jared Andreoli in the sixth inning, cutting the Owls' lead in half. However, that's as close as the hosts would get in the series opener. The Hilltoppers' starting pitcher Tanner Perkins dropped to 6-3 on the season after allowing four runs in 6.1 innings.
Cassidy paced the offensive attack with two RBIs and a run scored. DelGuidice, the reigning Sun Belt Conference Player of the Week, and Albaladejo tallied two hits each. Both of DelGuidice's hits were doubles, increasing his record-setting statistic. Senior first baseman Dan Scheffler, Hudak and Mee rounded out the Owls' 10-hit total. Hudak and DelGuidice each have six-game hitting streaks for the season, and DelGuidice is hitting .440 (11 of 25) during that stretch.
WKU was led by Casey Dykes' three hits and a run scored.
Broadcast details of Saturday's game can be found at www.fausports.com. Season and individual tickets of Florida Atlantic baseball are available by calling the FAU Ticket Office at 1-866-FAU-OWLS.