BRONX, N.Y. – With two outs in the bottom of the 13th inning, Robby Sunderman stretched an outfield hit into a double which setup an RBI walk-off single from Josh Jeffery to give University of Dayton baseball a 4-3 win over Saint Joseph’s on Thursday night and into early Friday morning.
The extra-inning win advanced No. 2 Dayton (29-28) to Atlantic 10 Championship semifinal against No. 5 Richmond on Friday afternoon at approximately 2 p.m. ET from Fordham's Houlihan Park.
In its first A-10 Championship appearance, Saint Joseph’s (24-31) will play No. 3 seed Rhode Island tomorrow at 11 a.m. ET in the consolation bracket.
The three-hour, 14-minute game (preceded by a one-hour, 45-minute rain delay) began at 9:15 p.m. on Thursday and ended at 12:29 a.m. on Friday (ET).
Saint Joseph’s got on the board in the fourth inning with a RBI triple from third baseman Stefan Kancylarz and a RBI double from second baseman Lansing Veeder. The Flyers chipped away at the Hawks’ lead with two RBI singles off the bat of junior left fielder Ian Hundley.
Hundley finished 4-for-6 with two runs batted in and one run scored to lead the Flyers offensively.
In the top of the ninth, Saint Joseph’s took a 3-2 lead, but Dayton quickly responded with another run in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game again and force extra innings. Hundley got things started in the ninth with a bunted single and advanced to second on a throwing error. Senior third baseman C.J. Gillman, the A-10 leader in RBI, then drove Hundley in on a single to centerfield to tie the game at three.
Gillman’s hit would be Dayton’s last until Sunderman’s two-out double in the bottom of the 13th. Sunderman placed a 1-2 count through the left side of the infield and stretched his slow-rolling gapper from an assumed single into a double. Jeffery, who entered the game in the ninth inning, drove in Sunderman, representing the game-winning run, on a single up the middle.
Senior right-handed pitcher Burny Mitchem (6-7) entered in the ninth inning and finished the last 4 2/3 shutout innings with five strikeouts to receive the win. In his last five appearances Mitchem has earned a win or a save for the Flyers.
Senior right-handed pitcher Mike Hauschild started the front end of Dayton’s longest game of the season, lasting 8 1/3 innings with eight strikeouts and three runs allowed for the no-decision.
Dayton out-hit the Hawks 14-10, but were struck out a season-high 16 times. SJU starter Kyle Mullen notched a career-high 12 strikeouts, two shy of the A-10 Championship record of 14. Mike Muha (4-3) suffered the loss, throwing 2/3 of an inning, allowing two hits and one run.
The Flyers improve to 13-9 in one-run games and 6-3 in extra-inning games.
Senior right-handed pitcher Tim Bury (7-2) will start on Friday against Richmond.