Graffeo Rebounds from Tough Start with Dominate Complete Game Victory Over Lynn
March 26, 2010
Written By: Michael Brown, PBA Sports Information Director
LAKE WORTH, Fla.- After a tough beginning to his third start of the season, Palm Beach Atlantic University freshman right-hander Peter Graffeo certainly rebounded on Friday night at Dave Manzo Field. The Boca Raton native allowed a three-run homer in the first, then shut down 18 Fighting Knights’ batters in a row while tallying the complete-game, 13 strikeout performance as PBA came-from-behind to win 4-3.
Now 2-0 on the season, Graffeo proved to be dominant on Friday evening as he shook off the tough first-inning that included a three-run homerun from LU designated-hitter Patrick Roedel that quickly put the visiting Knights in front. That would be all Graffeo would allow in terms of runs the rest of the night as he collected a career-high 13 strikeouts while scattering seven hits and just one walk while going the distance.
In the top of the second-inning it appeared as if Lynn (10-20-1) would be looking for more after their three-run outburst when Einar Atencio split the Sailfish outfielders in left-center field for a double that sent Leo Carrilo sprinting around the bases. Carrilo would be waved home however he stumbled around third-base and got into a run-down that allowed the Fish to keep him from scoring.
From that point, Graffeo would not allow another base-runner until two outs in the eighth inning on a single from Dane Derstine.
The Sailfish (10-10) who with tonight’s win matched their 2009 win total, were up against a tough competitor themselves in All-American Dan Wright who a season ago shutout the Fish 6-0 in his only appearance against PBA. Tonight would also be a night where Wright would perform well as he kept the Fish scoreless for the first three-innings before allowing a RBI single from Keith Clabaugh in the bottom of the fourth inning.
The score would remain 3-1 in favor of the Knights entering the bottom of the eighth inning as Wright went back to the mound in attempt to continue baffling the Sailfish hitters. He would immediately run into trouble however when he plunked leadoff man Vasilios Mila which effectively ended his night as LU head coach Rudy Garbalosa made the call to the bullpen.
Garbalosa would call upon often-used Sam Jones who made his 19 appearance of the season in tonight’s ballgame. Jones would struggle however as he allowed a single to PBA centerfielder Scott Urbanek that put runners on the corners with nobody out. Up next stepped Sam Testa who collected an infield hit that plated Mila and allowed Urbanek to scamper to third-base for again runners at the corners with no one out.
After a strikeout of Neil Hardon and an intentional pass given to Justin Sizemore to load the bases, the veteran Clabaugh would single down the right-field line allowing Urbanek and Testa to both score as Testa slid in just ahead of the throw to give the Fish their first lead at 4-3.
Needing just three final outs, Graffeo returned to the hill one final inning and despite allowing a single in the inning, struck out pinch-hitter Sean Harvey to close out the game and preserve the big win.
Palm Beach Atlantic collected nine hits on the evening with Urbanek, Testa, and Clabaugh all registering a multi-hit game. Clabaugh drove in three runs while Testa scored twice and walked once.
Wright was given the no-decision as he allowed six hits and two runs in seven plus innings while striking out seven and walking one. Sam Jones logged only 1/3 of an inning and was tagged with the loss after allowing three hits and two runs in the four batters he faced. Ryan Digiose retired pinch-hitter Ismael Cotto to end the threat in the eighth inning for LU.
Atencio and Matt Noble both registered two hits each for the Knights while Roedel did the big damage with three RBI’s on the first-inning homerun.
Palm Beach Atlantic and Lynn will resume their weekend series on Saturday as the Fish travel south to take on the Fighting Knights at their Boca Raton campus beginning with a 12 p.m. start to a double-header.