Rutgers Downs Tech, 10-5
Tugwell homers in loss
April 28, 2003

PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Freshman lefthander Matt Pustay fired 6.1 innings of three-hit, one-run relief as Rutgers rallied for a 10-5 win and three-game series sweep of Virginia Tech in BIG EAST baseball action today at the Class of 53 Complex.

RU trailed 4-2 early in the contest, but scored three times in the third and, when the Hokies cut the gap to 7-5 with a run in the seventh, added three more runs, highlighted by back-to-back solo home runs from Jeff Frazier and Vinny Esposito. With the win, its ninth-straight overall and eighth-straight in conference play, Rutgers improves to 21-14 overall and 13-3 in BIG EAST play. Tech is now 27-15, 10-7 in conference action.

Rutgers scored twice in the second to take a 2-0 lead, as Matt Wolski opened with a double and scored on a single to center by Nick Cerulo. Two batters later, Mike Bionde doubled down the line in left, scoring Cerulo from first base.

The Hokies came back with four of their own in the top of the third, chasing RU starter Aaron Kalb. A pair of singles, sandwiched around a walk, loaded the bases with no outs, while a one-out walk to senior second baseman Marc Tugwell (Springfield, Va.) pushed across the first run. Sophomore catcher Wyatt Toregas (Ashburn, Va.) then followed with a single through the right side of the infield and senior centerfielder Brad Bauder (Ashburn, Va.) delivered a sacrifice fly to center, giving Tech a 3-2 lead. An infield error then allowed Tugwell to score.

Rutgers scored three runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 5-4 lead. A hit batter and a pair of walks loaded the bases with no outs, while Wolski doubled in two runs to tie the game at 4-4. With one out, Cerulo drove in another with a sacrifice fly to center, giving RU its second lead of the game.

Pustay retired the next six hitters he faced before allowing a leadoff single in the sixth. He escaped the sixth without incident, but allowed a solo home run to Tugwell in the seventh, which cut the lead to 7-5. RU had scored twice more in the fifth on an error by Tugwell, which allowed Wolski (single) and Normane (single) to score with two outs.

With Tech back within striking distance, Rutgers added an insurance run in the seventh on a two-out, RBI single by Grose and two more in the eighth on the back-to-back home runs from Frazier and Esposito.

Sophomore third baseman Chris Stanton (Centreville, Va.) led the Hokies with two hits and Tugwell drove in a pair of runs. Freshman lefthanded starter Andrew Wells (Alexandria, Va.) took the loss for Tech and is now 3-4 on the season.

Pustay improved to 2-0 this season. Grose and Wolski led the 12-hit attack for the Knights, while Frazier was 2-for-4.

The Hokies return to action on Tuesday night, as they travel to Kingsport, Tenn. to face East Tennessee State at 6:30 p.m. Tech will host Liberty at 3 p.m. on Wednesday.