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St. Joseph baseball ends Greenwich's 26-game FCIAC regular-season winning streak

Updated 11:17 am, Thursday, April 18, 2013

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  • St. Joseph's Mark Hirschbeck, left, celebrates with teammates after scoring a run, during baseball action against Greenwich in Trumbull, Conn. on Wednesday April 17, 2013. Photo: Christian Abraham / Connecticut Post

    St. Joseph's Mark Hirschbeck, left, celebrates with teammates after scoring a run, during baseball action against Greenwich in Trumbull, Conn. on Wednesday April 17, 2013.

    Photo: Christian Abraham

 

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TRUMBULL -- Since pitching and losing an extra inning game against Greenwich last season, St. Joseph's Stanley Wolpiuk has been waiting for his chance to face the Cardinals again.

An opportunity to end the Cardinals' 26-game FCIAC-regular season win streak just served as extra motivation for the senior hurler. Wolpiuk outdueled Greenwich ace Ryan Marks Wednesday, pitching a complete-game six-hitter while striking out seven as the Cadets defeated the Cardinals 4-0.

"I wanted this game since the beginning of the season," Wolpiuk said. "I pitched against them last year and we lost in extras, so I really wanted this game."

Marks was the hard-luck loser, allowing just one earned run over six innings of work, striking out six and allowing six hits.

It was the unusually shaky Cardinals defense behind Marks that opened the door for the Cadets.

"We made mistakes and they capitalized," said Greenwich coach Mike Mora, whose team dipped to 5-2 overall and 5-1 in the FCIAC. "They didn't make any mistakes, and with two good pitchers on the mound those mistakes hurt. It was a very good game until the end when we gave them two more runs that made it hard for us."

St. Joseph (5-2, 4-2 FCIAC) got on the board in the third behind three straight singles from No. 8 hitter Mike Pulaski, No. 9 hitter Jake Amoroso and leadoff man Jon Prutting, whose sharp single to left plated Pulaski.

Ryan Moran walked to lead off the fourth and came around to score on an infield error on a groundball off the bat of Brett Olayos, making it 2-0 Cadets.

Capitalizing on mistakes is something St. Joseph has been trying to do all season.

"That was big. We haven't had many outbursts offensively this year," Cadets coach Jim Chaves said. "We have been trying to preach capitalizing on any opportunity we got, and I thought the bottom of the order did a great job getting us going in the third inning and that was big for the other guys to see."

Greenwich's Ryota Fujikura led off the fifth with a single to right field, but only got to second base as Wolpiuk retired the next three batters.

Taylor Olmstead, who reached on a fielder's choice, advanced to third with one out in the sixth, but Wolpiuk was once again up to the task, striking out the next two batters.

"(Wolpiuk) was absolutely outstanding," Chaves said. "They have a really good lineup and we knew we were going to have to keep them off balance and he had all his pitches going and was throwing multiple pitches for strikes, which kept them off balance."

After the first two batters were retired in the sixth, Mark Hirschbeck reached on an error and later came around to score on an outfield throwing error after a single by Nick Williams. Williams then scored on a double by Olayos.

Greenwich got the first two men on in the seventh, but Liam O'Neil hit a hard grounder to Olayos at third which he fielded, tagging the runner advancing to third before firing to first for the double play.

scott.ericson@scni.com; 203-625-4423

GREENWICH 000 000 0 -- 0 6 3

ST. JOSEPH 001 102 x -- 4 6 1

Batteries: SJ -- Stanley Wolpiuk (W) and Ishmael Herrera; G -- Ryan Marks (L) and Jon Dreher.

Doubles: SJ -- Brett Olayos

Records: SJ 5-2, 4-2 FCIAC; G 5-2, 5-1 FCIAC