Pioneers Split Doubleheader with Rutgers-Camden


Justin Valentovic , Contributing Writer

On Sunday April 2 the William Paterson Pioneers baseball team spilt a doubleheader with Rutgers-Camden. The Pioneers lost the first game 3-1 and won the second game 7-3. Following the doubleheader the Pioneers move their overall mark to 8-8-2 with a record of  1-1-0 in New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) play.

Game One

The Pioneers starting pitcher Chris Babb had an impressive outing, where he gave up just three hits, and one earned run through seven innings. Babb was also able to strikeout six batters, while only walking two. When asked about his performance and what pitches had been working for him during his outing Babb said,

“Just focused, was locating fastballs, my curveball wasn’t working, I was just trying to throw strikes today”.

Along with Babb’s impressive performance, relief pitcher Eric Rosenberg  pitched the final two innings, giving up only one hit and earned run. Due to a solid performance by Rutgers-Camden’s starting pitcher Ian Scheidmann, the Pioneers’ offenses was unable to drive in runners that were in scoring position.

Game Two

Following the loss in the first game the Pioneers were able to find much needed spark for their offense in pithcer Mario Danza. In Danza’s relief outing he was able to hold Rutgers-Camden to only one hit through three innings.

The Pioneers’s offense came alive in the 5th inning when Eriq Colon drove in two runners with a single. Later in the 6th inning the Carlos Perez was able to score on a wild pitch giving them the lead.

Another key offensive perfomcance came from Jorge Solodkin where he had two RBI singles in the 6th and 8th innings. When asked about how Danza’s pitching performance helped impact the offense Head Coach Mike Lauterhahn said,

“It’s a game of momentum, when things start going the right way on the defensive end, and you’re throwing the ball well on the mound it carries over to the offense. He was a spark for us which is a huge thing. I think we were a little flat through game one, where we had some oppertuinties and we didn’t change the momentum of it, but Mario was that spark for us.”

Pitching definitely played a role in the doubleheader but it was the Pioneers offense that provided the spark that was needed to salvage the second game of the doubleheader.

Confrence Play

The majority of the remaining games on the schedule for the Pioneers are all within the NJAC. Following the doubleheader the Pioneers sit at 1-1-0 and are in sixth place in the NJAC.

When asked about what the team has to make an NJAC playoff appearance for the second consecutive season, Babb said,

“We have to win games and take it one step at a time”.

Recently Coach Lauterhahn reached a career milestone by winning his 200th career game. When asked about what that milestone meant to him he said,

“It’s special for the program. I’ve been around this thing for a longtime so it’s a credit to all of the coaches that have been around all the years and the players beucase you never do that alone. You don’t get to 200 by yourself.”

The Pioneers take on #11 Alvernia College in a non-conference matchup on Wednesday, April 5 before resuming conference play with a home and home series with route 46 rival, Montclair State University beginning on Thursday April 6 at Jeff Albies Field beginning at 3:30 p.m.