LYNDHURST, N.J. – Senior Jacob Nappi (Little Silver, N.J./Red Bank Regional) pitched six strong innings and junior catcher Carlos Bermudez (Miami, Fla./Tampa Bay Christian) laced a tiebreaking 2-run triple to lead Felician University to a 5-2 Game 2 victory over Chestnut Hill College and a split of the teams' Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference baseball doubleheader on Wednesday afternoon at the Lyndhurst Recreation Complex. Chestnut Hill claimed the day's opening contest, 3-1.
The twinbill marked the beginning of this season's 32-game CACC slate for both schools.
Senior Danny Healey Jr. (Brookhaven, Pa./Monsignor Bonner) was a combined 3 for 6 with an RBI and classmate L.T. Struble (Hammonton, N.J./Hammonton) also collected three hits during the doubleheader for Felician (7-13, 1-1 CACC). The Griffins received three hits from sophomore shortstop Jared Healey (Philadelphia, Pa./St. John Neumann).
Wednesday's nightcap was a scheduled seven-inning affair, and both teams plated a single run in the first. With two men on and one out in the bottom of the second inning, Bermudez drove a ball into Lyndhurst Rec's deep left field. Both runners scored easily, but Bermudez was cut down with a relay throw attempting to stretch his hit into an inside-the-park home run.
The Golden Falcons tacked on a run in the third. Mike Martinez (Union City, N.J./Bergen Catholic) led off with a single, was sacrificed to second base, and scored on a pair of wild pitches for a 4-1 Felician lead. Nappi (2-3) made the early offense stand up, working through six frames. He gave up five hits and a walk, allowing one earned run, while recording four strikeouts.
CHC pulled to within 4-2 on an RBI double by Ameir Uzzell (Levittown, Pa./Conwell-Egan) in the fifth. But after Nappi's perfect sixth, Felician added a run in the home half. Golden Falcon sophomore Nick Nardulli (Staten Island, N.Y./Tottenville) retired the Griffins in order in the seventh for his second save.
Bermudez also doubled, finishing 2 for 3. Jared Healey was 2 for 3 and scored a run for CHC.
Felician outhit the Griffins, 10-5, in Game 1, but left 11 runners on base. The Golden Falcons reached CHC right-hander Billy Bethel (Yardley, Pa./Pennsbury) for a first-inning run on Danny Healey's RBI single, but never scored again. Bethel (1-3) scattered nine hits over eight frames, striking out seven Golden Falcons while walking one.
The Griffins broke the 1-1 tie with two runs in the fifth off Golden Falcon sophomore hurler Michael Gutierrez (Garfield, N.J./Garfield) (2-3). After a leadoff hit, Gutierrez threw errantly to second base attempting to retire the lead runner on a bunt, and runners ended up on second and third. A strikeout followed, but on Sam Barletta's (Royersford, Pa./Spring-Ford) chopper to first base, pinch-runner Eric Small (Downingtown, Pa./Downingtown West) slid into home plate hard enough to dislodge the ball and score the go-ahead run. John Contoudis (Jenkintown, Pa./Jenkintown) followed with an RBI single.
Gutierrez worked eight innings, giving up two earned runs on five hits. He struck out nine batters while walking three. Danny Healey was 2 for 4 with a double, while Struble and Gino Tortoriello (New Egypt, N.J./New Egypt) both had triples for Felician. Contoudis drove in a pair of runs for the Griffins (6-10, 1-1).
Weather-permitting, the Golden Falcons and Griffins will conclude their four-game CACC season-series with another doubleheader on Friday, this time in Norristown, Pa., and hosted by Chestnut Hill.