ROCK HILL, S.C. – Senior southpaw Nate Koneski (North Dighton, Mass.) pitched seven shutout innings, allowing just three hits as the Holy Cross baseball team defeated Winthrop by a score of 3-0 at the Winthrop Ballpark. With the decision, the squad moves to 4-5 on the season while the Eagles go to 1-13. Junior John Colella (Herndon, Va.) completed the shutout, pitching two innings and earning his second save on the season.
The teams played seven scoreless innings as senior starter Koneski struck out six batters and worked himself out of a jam with runners on the corners in the bottom of the third. He finished with a full seven innings of work under his belt and was relieved in the top of the eighth by Colella. The Holy Cross offense put together two hits in the seven innings including singles from senior Chris Sintetos (Bethesda, Md.) and sophomore Brandon Cipolla (Abington, Mass.).
Sintetos came up big offensively in the top of the eighth. After the Crusaders loaded the bases on a walk, single by junior Alex Maldonado (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and Winthrop error, Sintetos singled to right field with two outs, sending home Maldonado and Cipolla. Junior Josh Olson (Woodbury, Minn.) made the most out of another Winthrop error, reaching base and allowing freshman Evan Ocello (Camarillo, Calif.) to come around and score the third run. A fielder's choice ended the inning as Holy Cross moved ahead 3-0.
Colella struck out two Eagles in the bottom of eighth as Winthrop went down in order. Holy Cross went three-up, three-down in the top of the ninth before Winthrop loaded the bases with one out in the final half of the inning. The Crusaders defense sealed the victory, turning a double play to end the game ahead by the 3-0 score.
Koneski earned his first win of the season to move to 1-0. He allowed three hits and struck out six batters in all. Colella pitched a total of two innings, allowing one hit while striking out three to earn his second save. Winthrop's starter, Matt Pierpont, tallied the loss, dropping to 1-3 overall. He pitched eight innings, allowing three runs on four hits while striking out nine. In all, Holy Cross collected three runs on four hits with no errors made.
Holy Cross returns to action for game two against Winthrop on Saturday, March 10 at 3:00 p.m. The game will be played at Winthrop Ballpark in Rock Hill, S.C.