The Bears (20-15) conclude their first postseason appearance held to just two hits by No. 5 seed Penn State Greater Allegheny (30-16).
The Lions got on the board first in the bottom of the 1st on a two-out RBI single from Oliver Girma. The Bears responded in the next half inning when Joe Mendez (Staten Island/Monsignor Farrell) drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second on a failed pickoff attempt, moved to third on a Vinny Rossi (Bayside/Holy Cross) grounder and scored on a wild pitch.
Penn State took the lead back in the bottom half of the inning, loading the bases and pushing across a solo run, but a diving stab at first by USCAA All-Academic Mike Cundari (Staten Island/St. Peter’s) flipping to starter Chris Cutrone (Levittown/Island Trees) kept the deficit at one.
The Lions broke through for four runs in the fifth, reaching Cutrone (4-7) for three hits and knocking him out of the game. The five-run deficit was too much for the Bears to overcome as they couldn’t get the bats going against USCAA Second-Team All-American Evan James (7-2), who struck out eight in the two-hitter.
Rossi and Brian Luebcke (Astoria/Monsignor McClancy) knocked the lone hits for St. Joseph’s.
In their opening game of the tournament, St. Joseph’s fell to the Briarcliffe College Bulldogs, 4-1.
The Bears were only able to muster three hits against Briarcliffe, who improved to 5-0 all-time against St. Joseph’s.
Freshman right-hander Rosario DiLorenzo (Howard Beach/Archbishop Molloy) went toe-to-toe with Bulldog starter Gavin Stewart, a USCAA First-Team All-American, in a pitchers’ duel that saw the score tied at 1-1 through five until the Bulldogs broke through for three runs in the sixth.