Two-time defending Georgetown Cup baseball champion St. Joe’s earned the No. 1 seed for the upcoming Monsignor Martin Association playoffs by defeating longtime rival Canisius, 2-1, on Sunday afternoon at Delaware Park.
The Marauders and Crusaders both finished with 12-2 regular-season records in the league, but St. Joe’s earned the top seed by virtue of its season sweep of Canisius. The Marauders won the earlier meeting between the teams at St. Joe’s, 9-5 in eight innings, on Matt Ruggiero’s walk-off grand slam.
The Marauders took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on sophomore Anthony Brophy’s single, which plated David Archer, who reached via single and then stole second base to get into scoring position. St. Joe’s made it 2-0 in the sixth as Tommy Brummer, who doubled, scored all the way from second on a perfectly executed bunt by Derek Penman. Penman beat the throw to first, as the ball hit him in the back and bounced far enough away from the Crusaders defense that Brummer scored without a play at the plate.
Canisius made things interesting in the bottom of the sixth as John Conti scored on Richard Miller’s sacrifice fly, but that’s all the Crusaders could get against Chris Falk. Falk finished off his four-hitter by retiring Canisius in order, ending the game with a strikeout. He struck out six and walked none Sunday.
St. Joe’s will find out later in the week who it faces in the Georgetown Cup quarterfinals on Thursday at the Robert T. Scott Complex. Some teams still have to play games, which will affect seeding.
“It’s obviously great to win any game in this league,” St. Joe’s coach Paul Nasca said. “We were fortunate to just make a couple more plays today. The sweep is a plus. The last game didn’t have any bearing” on this one. “You have to be ready to play every day in this league. Everyone is capable of beating someone else.”
All-High Regatta today
A Memorial Day tradition continues this morning as the West Side Rowing Club plays host to the Fontana All-High City Championships Regatta.
The event begins at 9 a.m. and concludes early afternoon with event finals. Besides West Side Rowing Club, St. Joe’s, Nichols, Nardin, Buffalo Seminary and Canisius are among the competitors who will race along the Black Rock Channel.