TAMPA, Fla. – Three pitchers, including lefty starter Brad Hencke (Land O'Lakes, Fla.), combined on a four-hit shutout as defending NCAA Division II national champion University of Tampa completed a season-opening sweep of Bentley University, 5-0, in college baseball at the UT Baseball Field Sunday afternoon.
Henke gave up one hit and struck out two during his four innings of work. Kevin Martin (McDonough, Ga.), another senior lefty, came in for the next four and allowed three hits while striking out six. Junior righty Nick Nolan (Seminole, Fla.) finished with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
They received the only run they would need in the bottom of the first. After opening the game with two singles and a hit batter, junior second baseman Laz Rivera (Miami, Fla.) brought in senior center fielder Casey Scoggins (Port St. Lucie, Fla.) from third with a sacrifice fly.
Scoggins and Rivera teamed up again in the third when the former led off with a single, stole second, moved to third on a double play and scored on Rivera's single to left.
Junior right fielder Danny Lee (Sarasota, Fla.) made it a 4-0 game with a two-run single in the sixth, and a sacrifice fly by junior first baseman Adrian Chacon (Tampa, Fla.) completed the scoring in the eighth.
Tampa finished with nine hits, including two apiece by Scoggins, Rivera and Lee.
Bentley's best scoring opportunity came in the fifth when singles by junior first baseman Burton Deady (Andover, Mass./Andover) and freshman right fielder Brandon Grover (Rocky Hill, Conn./Rocky Hill HS), along with a Tampa error, put runners on second and third with no outs. However, Martin escaped trouble with a strikeout and a double play.
Senior second baseman Zachary Littman (Abington, Mass./Abington HS) had Bentley's only extra base hit, an eighth-inning double, and junior shortstop Justin Ashworth (Orange, Conn./Amity Regional HS) had the Falcons' best offensive weekend, with his five hits in 10 at bats including a second-inning single.
Bentley, 0-3, will be back in Florida in two weeks for a three-game series at Rollins College.