AUSTIN, Texas — The Bethany College baseball team opened its 2014 campaign Saturday by sweeping Huston-Tillotson University.
Bethany picked up its first victory of the season with a 3-1 win in the opener.
"We came out a little tight, but were just happy to be playing a game in great weather," Bethany coach Andrew Bartman said. “(Clayton) Cozzitorto threw a great game and the offense did enough to win. We left way too many runners on base, but it was a good game to build off of."
After a scoreless first inning, the Swedes took a 1-0 lead in the second. Bethany tacked on another run in the third before Huston-Tillotson added its first score in the bottom of the third. The Swedes extended the lead to 3-1 in the fourth.
Cozzitorto threw a complete game for the Swedes, earning the win. He recorded five strikeouts and four walks, allowing one unearned run on three hits.
Senior catcher Nick Lucchesi led Bethany with a 2-for-3 performance with a double and two runs scored. Seniors Christian Ornelas, Jordan Geiger, Nate Estores and Daniel Hordo each added hits.
In game two, Bethany got on the board early with one run before the Rams took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the first. The Swedes regained the advantage in the second, leading 3-2. An offensive-heavy fourth inning saw four Bethany runs and five runs by the Rams to tie the game 7-7. The Swedes plated two runs in the fifth, holding a 9-7 advantage, and added a 10th run in the sixth. Bethany held the Rams scoreless in the seventh to complete the sweep on the day with a 10-7 victory in game two.
Ryley Ross got the win in relief, allowing no runs on two hits and one strikeout in 3 1/3 innings. Starting pitcher Andrew Gomez gave up seven runs, five earned, on eight hits with three walks and one strikeout in 3 2/3 innings.
Senior Aaron Huerta led the Swedes offense, going 4 for 5 with three runs batted in and a stolen base. Junior Nick Ceccarelli added a 3-for-4 performance with four runs batted in and a stolen base. Ornelas went 2 for 3 with three runs and a stolen base. Eight of the Swedes’ starters garnered at least one hit.
"Our offense picked us up in game two with answers when we needed them," Bartman said. "However, we still left a small army on base (11). At the end of the day, we did enough to win and sweep our first day out."
The teams are scheduled to play two more games today.