Mahdi, Norfolk State Spartans Complete Sweep Of Villanova With 11-3 Win

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Norfolk

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NORFOLK, Va. – Syeed Mahdi went 3-for-4, including a solo homer in the third and the go-ahead RBI single in Norfolk State’s four-run sixth, as the Spartans completed their first-ever sweep of a Big East team with an 11-3 win over Villanova on Sunday afternoon at Marty L. Miller Field.

With the sweep, NSU is off to its first 3-0 start since the 1994 season, when the Spartans competed in Division II.

Villanova held a 1-0 lead thanks to an RBI single by Tyler Bruno in the top of the second. But Mahdi, who tied for the team-lead with five homers last season, launched the first round-tripper of the year for NSU in the bottom of the third off Villanova starter Jonathan Rosero to tie the score.

The score would remain that way until the sixth, when the Spartans put together a two-out-rally. Ismael Herrera hit a one-out single, and after a fielder’s choice, pinch hitter Tony Leite was hit by a pitch to put two runners on. That’s when Mahdi bounced a single up the middle off of reliever Tyler Arella, scoring Justin Burrell with the go-ahead run. Denathan Dukes followed by lining a two-run triple into the right-field corner, chasing Arella from the game. Alex Mauricio greeted reliever Ryan Pfutzenreuter with an RBI single to complete the rally and push the NSU lead to 5-1.

Roger Hall led off the seventh with a double and scored on a two-out single by Burrell to increase the edge to 6-1. NSU tacked on five more in the eighth thanks to a run-run double by Adam Collins, an RBI double by Alex Mauricio, and RBI singles by Roger Hall and pinch-hitter Johnny Mayer in his first career plate appearance.

Chase Anderson (1-0) earned the win with four sharp innings of relief work. He allowed just one hit and no runs while striking out four in his relief stint. Starter Jonathan Mauricio allowed just one run and three hits with three strikeouts in four innings, but took the no-decision.

Alex Mauricio (3-for-3, two walks, two RBI) and Hall (3-for-5, two runs) joined Mahdi with three hits apiece. Dukes and Herrera both went 2-for-5. Mahdi scored three runs, while Hall and Dukes scored twice. NSU notched 41 hits in the three-game sweep, including 33 in the last two games of the series.

The Spartans are back in action Wednesday in a non-conference game at North Carolina A&T. First pitch is set for 4 p.m. in Greensboro, N.C.

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