Central Connecticut baseball head coach Charlie Hickey earned the 600th win of his career with a 14-6 victory over Fairleigh Dickinson on Friday afternoon. The Blue Devils erased an early five-run deficit and pounded out 18 hits in the win to open a four-game Northeast Conference series.
CCSU improves to 30-20 on the season, including an 18-7 mark in league play. The Knights slip to 12-31 overall and 8-15 in the NEC.
The win was Hickey's 494th in 18 seasons at Central. He collected 106 wins as head coach at Providence College in three seasons. The victory also gave the Blue Devils their seventh 30-win season under Hickey.
FDU took the early lead with five runs in the second inning. The Knights opened the inning with four straight singles and a two-run homerun from Ryan Brennan put FDU in front, 5-0.
A sacrifice fly by Matt McCann would score a run for FDU to make it 6-6 in the fourth, before Central responded to retake the lead in the bottom of the inning. Freshman Buddy Dewaine doubled home the first run and a single by senior Franklin Jennings drove home Dewaine to make it 8-6.
The Blue Devils tacked on two runs in the sixth. Jennings drove in a run on an infield single and scooted to third on an error. A ground out by Garland would score Jennings to make it 10-6. three
Central recorded five straight hits with one out in the seventh. Coleman singled followed by a double from junior Ryan Costello. Junior Mitch Guilmette singled to score two runs and make it 12-6. After a double by Dewaine to put runners on second and third, freshman Chris Kanios singled up the middle to plate two runs and increase the lead to 14-6 and close out the scoring.
The Blue Devils had seven players collect at least two hits on the day, including Jennings and Dewaine who each went 3-for-5. Jennings scored two runs and drove in two more to go with a stolen base. Dewaine had an RBI and two runs scored. Central had seven steals as a team, including three apiece by Lockery and Kanios.
Junior Kyle Anderson earned the win in relief for CCSU. He tossed 5.0 shutout innings and scattered five hits and a walk.
The Knights finished with 12 hits as a team. Mike Veit, Owen VonEsslinger and Jason Fatzinger had two each.
Evan Layne started and took the loss. He was charged with seven earned runs on 10 hits in 3.2 innings of work.
The teams continue the series with a doubleheader on Saturday beginning at 1:00 p.m.