O'Keefe Breaks All-Time Hit Record as Moravian Falls to TCNJ
EWING, N.J. – The Moravian College baseball team fell to The College of New Jersey, 6-2, Tuesday afternoon. Senior first baseman Kevin O'Keefe became Moravian's all-time hit leader as he went 3-for-4 at the plate, and now has 178 career hits. He also had a stolen base and a run scored on the day.
Sophomore pitcher Brendan Kelly would start the game for the Lions. He would throw a 1-2-3 inning in the top of the first while forcing three ground outs.
Senior pitcher Kyle Longernecker would make his first career start in his 34th career appearance for Moravian. Senior first baseman Jim Ruzich would score after a single from classmate catch Mike Galeotafiore as TCNJ would take a 1-0 lead after the first.
O'Keefe would single to left field in the top of the second. With that hit, O'Keefe would collect career hit number 176, which is the new all-time hits record at Moravian. He then stole second, but would be stranded at third as Kelly would work his way out of the inning unscathed.
After Longernecker struck out the first batter of the second, he would give up a single to freshman shortstop Anthony Cocuzza. He then advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt. Cocuzza then came around to score after an error on the play for a 2-0 lead.
Freshman third basman Jacob DeWitt lead off the third with a single for the Lions. Ruzich followed with a double down the right field line. Junior outfielder Mike Murphy would drive both runners home with a single to left field for a 4-0 lead. TCNJ added two more runs in the inning for a 6-0 lead after the third.
Senior shortstop Dave Zubia would get hit by a pitch to get on. O'Keefe followed with a double down the left field line. Senior designated hitter Austin Rock would get Zubia home after grounding out to the shortstop. Classmate third baseman Gregg Steinman would extend his hit-streak to seven games with a RBI single to right center.
Longernecker would give up a lead-off single in the bottom of the fourth, but would finish the inning with back-to-back strikeouts as the score would remain at 6-2, TCNJ.
Both teams would pitch scoreless innings the rest of the way as the Lions would win 6-2.
Longernecker picked up the loss after going five innings and striking out two. Steinman went 1-for-3 with a RBI while senior catcher Blake Shortall went 2-for-3 at the plate.
Kelly picked up the victory for TCNJ as he went six innings while only allowing two runs and striking out three. Galeotafiore had one RBI and a run while going 3-for-3. Murphy had two RBIs and two hits while Ruzich scored two runs, and had two hits. Cocuzza went 2-for-3 with one run.
Moravian returns to action on Saturday, March 24th for a doubleheader against Landmark Conference foe Juniata College. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.