Bethune Cookman Takes Down University North Florida, 8-3




Bethune Cookmen Sports Information


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Zach Spivey provided three hits and three RBIs while Alexis Herrera was solid on the mound Wednesday night in helping Bethune-Cookman to an 8-3 non-conference midweek win over North Florida at Radiology Associates Field at Jackie Robinson Ballpark.

For the 12th time in 14 games, Bethune-Cookman (5-9) allowed a run in the opening inning of the game to trail 3-0 after a half-inning played.

In the bottom-half of the frame, junior first baseman Danny Rodriguez delivered a RBI ground out that allowed Kyle Corbin to trot in from third and score the first BCU run of the game. The Wildcats grabbed another run one batter later when Zach Spivey, a redshirt junior transfer from Florida Gulf Coast, powered the first of his game-high three hits through the right side for a run-scoring double that plated Jameel Edney.

With North Florida (6-8) leading 3-2 after an inning in the books, Bethune-Cookman starting pitcher Alexis Herrera remained calm on the mound and was able to pitch BCU right back into the contest. After allowing three runs and four hits in the opening frame, the right-handed senior from Miami allowed just two hits the rest of his time on the bump.

The Wildcats tied things up at 3-3 in the bottom of the third inning, using the second run-scoring double of the game from Ormond Beach, Florida native Spivey to bring around Danny Rodriguez. The Preseason Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Player of the Year – Rodriguez, worked his way on base earlier in his at-bat with a double to left field off UNF reliever Nick Marchese.

Ospreys starting pitcher Austin Drury worked just two innings and was on a pitch count as he continues to bounce back from injury.

The Wildcats would step in front for good in the home-half of the fifth, plating three runs in the frame for a 6-3 lead.

Rodriguez started things off with a double to right center, followed by the third run-scoring double of the game from BCU centerfielder Spivey, pushing across Rodriguez for the 4-3 advantage.

Nate Sterijevski reached safely in the next at-bat off a fielding error by UNF second baseman Mac Wilson, allowing Spivey to score from second, respectfully. The lead increased to 6-3 when catcher Chase DeBonis doubled to the wall in left, moving across Sterijevski for the score.

The Maroon and Gold would add two insurance runs in the seventh for the final 8-3 decision.

Spivey reached safely to begin the at-bat on a dropped fly from the Ospreys’ Wilson at second, followed by a walk drawn by Sterijevski. That allowed designated hitter Ian Claudio to register an RBI single to right field that drove across Spivey. DeBonis would add the next run courtesy his double to right center that plated Sterijevski.

The Wildcats bullpen of Joseph Calamita and Jordan Pinto worked the final 3.2 innings on the hill, not surrendering a run and scattering a collective two hits in the process.

The win was received by Herrera, his first of the year, to improve his record at 1-2 for the season. He went 5.1 innings on the bump with the three opening half-inning runs allowed on six hits, a walk and two strikeouts. The loss was tagged to UNF reliever Marchese who fell to 1-2 on the year in working three frames, surrendering four runs (two earned) on six hits, a walk and a pair of strikeouts.

The BCU offense was led by Spivey’s 3-for-5 effort at the dish, adding three RBIs and two runs. Joseph Fernando, Kyle Corbin, Danny Rodriguez and Chase DeBonis each supplied two hits in the game, respectively. But it was the two RBIs from DeBonis that led the group in that category, while Rodriguez chipped in with one of his own.

Bethune-Cookman begins MEAC play this weekend when the Wildcats travel to Florida A&M to take on the Rattlers in a three-game set at Moore-Kittles Field. The series begins with a doubleheader Saturday, March 10, at 1 p.m.

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