Rowan baseball takes down Neumann 11-5 in home opener

Phil Sedalis sprints home. Sedalis went 4-5 with three RBI in the win over Neumann on Wednesday. - Sunday, April 2, 2023. - Photo via Lee Kotzen

On Wednesday, March 20, Rowan baseball held its home opener against the 8-4 Knights of Neumann University. This was the Profs’ second game back from the RussMatt Central Florida Invitational, where they won eight out of nine games, en route to a 9-2 overall record. Yesterday, the Profs put up 20 runs in a win at Haverford to keep the good times rolling.

It was more of the same on Wednesday, as the Profs continued their winning ways with an 11-5 win over the Knights. Rowan dominated Neumann for the majority of the contest, but things got tense in the 9th inning when the Knights loaded up the bases against junior pitcher Sean Colbert.

Despite the situation, head coach Mike Dickson showed trust in his reliever and kept Colbert on the mound. The move paid off, as he was able to get Brandon Colon to fly out to left field to end the game.

“Colbert has been a back-end guy for us since coming on to the team last season,” Dickson said. “He’s been in these situations before and credit to him for working out of that jam.”  

Senior Mike Shannon got the start for the Profs on the mound. After drilling Knights right fielder AJ Nardo, who would later come around and score in the first, Shannon settled in, responding with five shutout innings. He ultimately would go seven innings in the contest, allowing five hits and striking out five to increase his win total to three.

Just like they’ve been all season, the bats were once again alive early for Rowan. In the first inning, senior Tyler Cannon led off the game with a double, and junior Phil Sedalis traded places with him to tie the game. Two batters later, Dylan Maria brought Sedalis home to give the Profs a lead they wouldn’t look back from.

In addition to his impact with the bat, Sedalis made game-changing plays on defense too. In the fourth inning and with two on and two out for the Knights, he stopped any potential rally with a diving catch in center. In the bottom half of the inning, he came up and hit a standup RBI triple for one of his four hits and three RBIs.

He described what was going through his head when making the play in center. 

“I was lucky that I caught the ball because he hit a line drive straight to me and at first, I didn’t see the ball, but thanks to my coaches I was in great positioning and was able to make a play,” Sedalis said.

The Profs offense was able to capitalize off of the errors that were made by the Knights. Two of Neumann’s five errors occurred in the third and resulted in three runs for the Profs.

Next up for Rowan is a road trip to Swarthmore, PA, to take on the 10-7 Swarthmore Garnets on Friday, March 22. Despite the early season success, Dickson knows that this Profs’ team still hasn’t reached their potential.

“We got to do a better job of the little things, Swarthmore is not gonna give us many free opportunities to score like we had today,” Dickson said. “I believe getting back down to the little things and being consistent with runners in scoring position will lead to a win.” 

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