Huskies sweep USF in weekend series


Riley Robinson

Baseball plays the second game of a doubleheader against Holy Cross Saturday, March 16, 2019 at Parsons Field.

Jordan Baron, news staff

Outscoring their opponents 19-5 over the course of two days, the Huskies brought their record back to .500 with their first three wins of the season via a sweep of the University of Southern Florida this past weekend.

Game one of Saturday’s double-header saw starting pitcher and redshirt senior Kyle Murphy grab his first win of the season after giving up three earned runs to Alabama in the NU (3-3) loss last weekend. Murphy gave the Huskies five shutout innings, limiting the Bulls (2-6) to only one hit while striking out eight. The performance was exactly what the Huskies needed after an abysmal opening weekend, and Murphy showcased the natural leadership quality that coach Mike Glavine described him as having. 

Redshirt junior third baseman Ian Fair went two for four, including a first inning base hit to right field that scored the eventual winning run for the Huskies.

After the Fair RBI, the Huskies were quiet until the fifth inning. Senior infielder Scott Holzwasser started off the five-run rally with a single to left field that scored a run, and he later scored on a wild pitch. With two runners on after another single from Fair, senior outfielder Kyle Peterson went deep to right field to tack on three more runs, making it 6-0 Huskies. 

Peterson knocked in another RBI in the Huskies’ two-run seventh before the game was capped by a two-run RBI single from junior outfielder Jeff Costello. NU ran away with the game, 10-0.

Husky starting pitching continued to dominate the USF lineup in game two. Junior starter Sam Jacobsak went eight innings and only gave up five hits, not allowing a single run to cross home plate. 

NU was blanked by USF freshman RHP Jack Jasiak for five innings before plating a run in the sixth on a fielding error. Holzwasser singled in the eighth inning off of Jasiak to increase the margin to two runs. In spite of his 11 strikeouts over seven and a third innings, Jasiak was saddled with the hard-luck loss, which the Huskies held onto to grab the game and secure at least the series win.

Game three on Sunday saw freshman right-hander Sebastain Keane make his second start of the season after his first collegiate appearance did not exactly go according to plan against the Crimson Tide. 

Keane shutout USF through three innings before allowing three runs in the fourth. After securing two quick outs, the Bulls got runners on second and third, putting the freshman flamethrower in his first jam of the night. Keane was evidently shaken from the sudden offense, and walked the next two batters to give the Bulls their first run of the night. A single from freshman left-fielder Carmine Lane knocked in two more off Keane before he settled down and got out of the inning with the Huskies down 3-1. 

The NU bats fired up late in the game however, saving Keane from another loss. After scoring once in the fifth to make it 3-2, the Huskies tied the game on a RBI single from sophomore infielder Spenser Smith. NU took the lead during the next at-bat on a wild pitch that scored Costello. 

The Huskies tacked on two more in the seventh before a Fair single in the eighth knocked in the seventh and final run of the game. Although the Bulls plated two more runs in the bottom of the ninth, it was not enough to surpass the Husky lead and NU ran away with the series sweep, 7-5.

The Huskies will look to stick with the momentum gained this weekend when they begin the Snowbird Baseball Classic on Friday at 3 p.m. versus Villanova (3-3). NU will remain in Port Charlotte, Florida at the classic until Wednesday, March 4.