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GannettUSA Today

Monday, March 26, 2007

MU baseball news and notes/from the NEC web site

Monmouth (8-7-1, 0-0 NEC)
Monmouth posted a 2-2 record last week with a 9-8 setback to St. Peter’s in its home opener on Thursday, followed by the Hawks taking two-of-three from visiting Vermont over the weekend. The Blue & White swept the Catamounts on Saturday, 3-0 and 7-5, before Vermont came back to take Sunday’s single game, 6-5...Monmouth started three freshmen in the three-game series versus Vermont over the weekend. One of the young hurlers, Ryan Buch (Yardley, PA/Conwell Egan Catholic), moved to 3-0 on the year after tossing six innings of shutout ball in game one on Saturday. He allowed just three hits, while matching a season-high with eight strikeouts...Buch leads all NEC pitchers with a .162 opponents’ batting average, and also ranks second in strikeouts (26 in just 19.1 innings of work) and third in ERA (1.86)...Senior lefthander Matt Marc-Aurele (Wayne, NJ/Wayne Valley) faced one batter and recorded a strikeout on Sunday. It was his first appearance since May 6, 2006, due to an arm injury...Junior first baseman Andy Meyers (Stratford, NH/Sterling) hit .429 for the week, collecting a team-best six hits and five RBI. He also scored four runs and blasted his third homer of the year. In the loss to St. Peter’s, he went 3-4 with a two-run double and a solo homer. He also drove in two runs against Vermont on Sunday...Junior Brad Brach (Freehold, NJ/Freehold Township), who fanned six batters against St. Peter’s, now has 142 career strikeouts, six behind Brian Gismonde (1998-01), who is seventh on the school’s all-time list...Senior outfielder Kyle Messineo (Cedar Grove, NJ/Cedar Grove) is 13-15 in stolen base attempts this season, giving him 42 swipes in his season-plus with the Hawks, which ranks him sixth in Monmouth history. Greg Landis (1998-01) is the all-time leader in stolen bases with 90...Messineo teamed with senior Justin Braun (Stony Brook, NY/St. John the Baptist) to connect on a pair of two-out, three-run homers to help the lead the Hawks its comeback 7-5 win over Vermont in game two on Saturday. The homer was Messineo’s second of the season and career, while Braun connected on his first this year and the seventh of his career...Junior backstop John Dennis (Union, NJ/Union) led the Hawks in hitting last week, going 5-11 (.455) with two RBI and three runs scored...Meyers now has 13 homers and 96 RBI in his Monmouth career...Junior shortstop Kyle Higgins (Green Brook, NJ/Watchung Hills) is second in the league with a .435 average. He paces all NEC players with 17 runs, seven doubles and 42 total bases...Meyers (.393, seventh) and Messineo (.364, eighth) also rank in the conference top-10 in hitting...Freshman righthander Matt Frazier (Whippany, NJ/Whippany Park) is sixth in the league with a 2.95 ERA...Monmouth paces the NEC with a .314 team batting average...The Hawks host Iona on Wednesday, then travel to Liberty for a Saturday doubleheader and single game on Sunday.

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