RINDGE, N.H. (March 31, 2019) – Junior right-hander Derek Duffy (Farmington, Conn.) took it upon himself to make sure the Franklin Pierce University baseball team came away with the victory in the rubber game of its weekend series with Saint Michael's at a soggy Dr. Arthur and Martha Pappas Field on Sunday afternoon. He piled up a career-high 12 strikeouts over eight innings of four-hit ball, while the Ravens capitalized on five Saint Michael's errors to pull out a 3-1 victory in the Northeast-10 Conference, Northeast Division contest.
With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 12-10 (5-1 NE10, 3-1 NE Div.), while Saint Michael's falls to 5-8 (2-4 NE10, 1-2 NE Div.).
Duffy was the story of the afternoon, as he largely breezed through eight innings on 94 pitches (70 strikes). He allowed just one run on four hits, did not issue a walk and recorded the 12 strikeouts. He retired the side in order in the second, third, fifth, sixth and eighth innings, including striking out the side in the fifth.
Duffy (2-0) allowed only two runners past first base all afternoon, as a two-out double by Saint Michael's junior second baseman Lenin Gomez followed by an RBI single from freshman catcher Sebastian Oetterer produced the Purple Knights' only run in the top of the seventh. Freshman right-hander Danny Gracia (Wilmington, Mass.) later came on and struck out the side on 11 pitches in the ninth to notch his third save of the season.
Meanwhile, the Franklin Pierce offense was held to just three hits, but managed to scratch out two runs in the fourth and another in the sixth to come up with the 3-1 victory. In the fourth, junior first baseman Jonel Ozuna (New York, N.Y.) walked leading off. He would move over to third as senior catcher Ural Forbes (Freeport, Bahamas) rocketed a single off the ankle of the pitcher and into shallow left field. Ozuna scored on a sacrifice fly to right by freshman third baseman Jethro Hurt (New York, N.Y.), while Forbes later came home to score on an error.
In the sixth, junior second baseman Justin Perez (Willimantic, Conn.) reached with a one-out walk, moved around to third on a single through the right side by senior left fielder Brad Roberto (San Diego, Calif.) and then stole home on a first-and-third play.
Sophomore right-hander Dante Moran (2-1) took the ball for Saint Michael's and needed 123 pitches (73 strikes) to find his way through six innings. He allowed three runs (two earned) on two hits, walked six, threw a wild pitch and struck out six.
The Ravens return to the field on Tuesday, April 2, when they travel to Southern New Hampshire for an NE10 Northeast Division contest. First pitch is set for 3:30 p.m. at Penmen Field in Manchester, N.H.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce baseball apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (https://www.fpuravens.com/store).