Baseball Loses to Kean in NJAC Tournament, 3-1

Box Score

Union, N.J. (5/3/11) – Senior Chris Cirlincione tossed a complete game, four hitter to lead the Kean University baseball team to a 3-1 win over Montclair State University in the first round of the New Jersey Athletic Conference Tournament.

The top seeded Cougars improve to 32-7 overall while the loss drops MSU to 18-16 this season as the Red Hawks now head to the elimination bracket of the tournament.

The Red Hawks scored the game’s first run in the top of the third freshman Anthony Bowens (Nutley, NJ / Nutley)reached on a leadoff walk.  He would then move to third on an errant throw by the Cougars putting runners on the corners with no outs.  Senior Andrew Himmelfarb (Upper Nyack, NY / Nyack) then lofted a sacrifice fly to rightfield to put MSU up 1-0. 

Kean, ranked fifth and sixth in the latest NCBWA/D3baseball.com and ABCA polls, then took the lead for good with two runs in their half of the fourth inning.  Junior Lee Cavico and senior Ken Gregory got on with back-to-back singles and senior Kyle Walker tied things up with a sacrifice fly.  Later in the innings, sophomore Steve Nappe lined a ground-rule double to center to drive in what would be the winning run.

The Cougars tacked on an insurance run in the fifth frame as Cavico launched a solo homerun, his seventh of the season.

Cirlincione (6-0) allowed just one unearned run in his first complete game of the season.  He also walked three and struck out two.  Southpaw Jonathan Torregroza (Bound Brook, NJ / Immaculata) suffered the loss for MSU.  Torregroza (2-3) allowed three runs and six hits in six innings of work.  He fanned five and walked two.

Offensively Gregory was 3-for-4 with three stolen bases, while Cavico was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI.  For the Red Hawks, catcher Kevin Bond (Cedar Grove, NJ / Cedar Grove) was 2-for-4 with a double.

Kean will host #4 Ramapo College on Thursday at Jim Hynes Stadium beginning at 3:30 p.m. while Montclair State will travel to #5 The College of New Jersey.