Feb. 27, 2014
Patriot League Baseball Release - 2.27.14
CENTER VALLEY, Pa. - Holy Cross has a history of challenging itself in the non-League schedule under seventh-year Head Coach Greg DiCenzo, and last weekend the Crusaders were up to the task by splitting a four-game series at No. 7 Mississippi State.
Patriot League Notebook
THE TOP FIVE @PATRIOTLEAGUE NOTES
*Holy Cross split a four-game set at No. 7 Mississipp State over the weekend, winning the last two games in Starkville.
*Army swept a three-game series at Massachusetts to improve to 4-2 for the year.
*Navy's Anthony Parenti has both of the team's wins and has tossed 15 scoreless innings on the mound.
*The Mids become the first Patriot League team to play at home when they host Cornell on Saturday.
*All six squads are in action over the weekend, with Lehigh and Holy Cross beginning week-long trips.
Holy Cross Earns a Split Against Top-10 Opponent
Holy Cross has a history of challenging itself in the non-League schedule under seventh-year Head Coach Greg DiCenzo, and last weekend the Crusaders were up to the task by splitting a four-game series at No. 7 Mississippi State. Brandon Cipolla and Anthony Critelli each earned Patriot League weekly awards for their performance over the weekend, while Donny Murray allowed just one run in seven innings to pick up the victory as the Crusaders earned the split with a 6-1 win on Sunday. Holy Cross committed only two errors in the four games.
Navy's Home Opener, Spring Trips for Two Others Highlight Slate
Navy and Bucknell were both scheduled to open their home schedule this weekend, but as of Thursday the Mids are now the only team that will be trying to beat the cold and snow and play on their own field. Navy is set to welcome Cornell for a three-game series on Saturday and Sunday. Bucknell's four-game set against Niagara was moved to Petersburg, Va., while Army and Lafayette will both head south for road trips as well. Lehigh and Holy Cross each begin their spring break action on Saturday, with the Mountain Hawks playing in Port Charlotte, Fla. and the Crusaders beginning a trip to the southeast with a four-game series at Charleston Southern from Saturday-Monday.
Parenti Leads Solid Navy Pitching Staff
Navy has posted a 3.04 earned run average in its first six games, due in large part to the performance of two-time Patriot League Pitcher of the Week Anthony Parenti. The junior has not given up a run in 15 innings on the mound, and is coming off nine-inning complete-game shutout against Air Force on Friday where he struck out 13 in the 3-0 victory. Parenti has a 2-0 record with just six hits and two walks allowed and 19 strikeouts in his 15 scoreless innings this season.
Army, Navy Share Preseason Favorite Role
For the second straight season, there was a tie at the top of the Patriot League Baseball preseason poll as both Army and Navy shared the top spot in the rankings announced on Feb. 6. The Black Knights and Mids were even with 42 points apiece, with Army garnering five first-place votes to three for the Navy. Holy Cross was not far behind with 35 points and a pair of first-place votes, while Bucknell took home 31 points and the remaining two first-place votes followed by Lehigh (17) and Lafayette (13). Holy Cross and Army were tied for the favorite role last year, with the Crusaders taking the regular-season crown before falling to the Black Knights in the Patriot League Championship series. A pair of juniors claimed the individual awards, as Holy Cross outfielder Evan Ocello was named Patriot League Preseason Player of the Year and Navy's Stephen Moore claimed the Preseason Pitcher of the Year award.
Patriot League Baseball Weekly Awards
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
BRANDON CIPOLLA, HOLY CROSS Sr., OF, Abington, Mass.
Cipolla batted .467 (7-for-15) with two doubles, a home run, two RBIs and four runs scored as Holy Cross split a four-game series at No. 7 Mississippi State over the weekend. He had a hit in all four games, with a 2-for-3 effort with two runs scored and two walks in a 7-6 win for the Crusaders on Saturday. Cipolla also went 3-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs in an 8-4 loss in Saturday's opener to go 5-for-8 for the day. Cipolla has a 20-game streak of reaching base after doing so for the final 16 games of the 2013 season.
PITCHER OF THE WEEK
ANTHONY PARENTI, NAVY Jr., P, Elizabeth, N.J.
Parenti threw a nine-inning complete-game shutout while allowing just four hits and one walk and striking out 13 to lead Navy to a 3-0 win over Air Force on Friday. It was his first career shutout and also marked a career high for strikeouts. He faced the minimum over his first 25 batters, and ended up facing only 29 in the game while not allowing a runner to reach third base for the second time in as many games this season. Parenti has opened the season with a 2-0 record and 15 scoreless innings on the mound, allowing just six hits and two walks while striking out 19 in his first two starts. Parenti is the first repeat Patriot League Pitcher of the Week since his former teammate, Ben
ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
ANTHONY CRITELLI, HOLY CROSS Fr., 3B, Holmdel, N.J.
Critelli hit .353 (6-for-17) with a run scored and four RBIs to help Holy Cross split its four-game series at No. 7 Mississippi State. He started each game and broke out in the third contest of the series, going 4-for-4 with a double and three RBIs to lead the Crusaders to a 7-6 win on Saturday. He also scored a run in Holy Cross' 6-1 win in the series finale on Sunday.
NICK DIGNACCO, ARMY Sr., P, Sharon, Conn.
Dignacco improved to 2-0 on the season by giving up just one hit and one walk over six scoreless innings of a 14-0 win over Massachusetts on Saturday.
DONNY MURRAY, HOLY CROSS Jr., P, Walpole, Mass.
Murray allowed just one run on six hits over seven innings to earn the victory in a 6-1 win over No. 7 Mississippi State on Sunday to lift the Crusaders to a split of the four-game series.
BRYSON HOUGH, BUCKNELL Jr., P, Fairfax, Va.
Hough tossed seven scoreless innings as the Bison fell 1-0 in 10 innings to Delaware State on Saturday.
JON CRUCITTI, ARMY Sr., OF, Mooresville, N.C.
Crucitti went 4-for-9 with four runs scored and four RBIs in Army's three-game sweep of Massachusetts.
CONNOR FAUST, LEHIGH Jr., 1B, Center Valley, Pa.
Faust was 5-for-11 on Lehigh's three-game season-opening weekend, and went 2-for-3 with a run and two RBIs in a 4-2 win over Fairleigh Dickinson on Saturday.