PISCATAWAY, N.J. – The Rutgers baseball team collected 16 hits with every starter recording at least one hit, as the Scarlet Knights cruised to a 16-7 victory over Iona Wednesday afternoon at Bainton Field.
The Scarlet Knights extended their unbeaten streak to five games and improved to 13-19-1 overall with Wednesday's victory.
Rutgers and Iona traded runs in the first with the Scarlet Knights loading the bases on three walks and using a grounder to the shortstop of the bat of Jaren Matthews (Teaneck, N.J.) to plate their run.
RU scored seven runs in the second inning and never looked back en route to the big victory. Bases-loaded walks by Michael Lang (Dumont, N.J.) and Jarred Jimenez (Monroe, N.J.) brought in the first two runs. Two batters later, Jon Gossard (Harrington Park, N.J.) greeted new pitcher Matthew Casino with a bases-loaded, two-run single back up the middle. The Scarlet Knights sandwiched a pair of run-scoring hits down the right-field line from Matthews and Pat Biserta (Point Pleasant, N.J.) around an RBI groundout from Luis Feliz (New Brunswick, N.J.) to cap their seven-run inning and build an 8-1 advantage.
Senior Vic Cegles (Phoenix, Ariz.) led off the third with a single to left field and scored three batters later on a Tom Edwards (West Caldwell, N.J.) grounder that found a hole through the right side for an RBI single to make it 9-1.
Feliz singled through the left side and Biserta drove him home with a double to the gap in right-center field to provide the first score in a six-run, fourth inning for the Scarlet Knights. A change in Iona pitchers brought Sean Darsee to the mound. After giving up a single to Dan Betteridge (Sewell, N.J.), Darsee allowed a run home on a wild pitch. Later in the inning, Lang drove in a pair of runs with a single to left field. An Edwards RBI single to the opposite field scored another run and a throwing error by the cutoff man allowed another run to cross the plate on the play to cap the Scarlet Knights' scoring in the frame.
Down, 15-1, Iona plated two runs in the fifth and four more in the sixth as starter Dale Hering (Montgomery, N.J.) handed the ball over to Billy Murphy (Cranford, N.J.) in the sixth frame.
The Scarlet Knights tacked on a run in the eighth off of newly-inserted Iona hurler Tom Sweeney to make it 16-7 and Ryan Beard (Point Pleasant, N.J.) closed it out with a pair of strikeouts in the ninth.
Hering (1-0) earned his first collegiate victory with three strikeouts and three earned runs (six total) allowed on seven hits in 5.1 innings, while William Dorsa (0-1) was saddled with the loss for Iona with six runs on one hit and seven walks in 1.1 innings.
Twenty different Scarlet Knights saw action in the game with sophomore pinch hitter Mike Livingston (Red Bank, N,J.) collecting his first career hit to set up the run in the eighth.
The Scarlet Knights will host USF in a three-game series this weekend at Bainton Field, beginning with a Friday contest against the Bulls. First pitch is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.