UConn Baseball won the second game of Friday’s doubleheader at J.O. Christian Field with a 6-2 win over No. 23 USF.
Center fielder Troy Stefanski was the only Husky with multiple hits while right fielder Isaac Feldstein and shortstop Anthony Prato each had two RBI.
Starting pitcher Mason Feole threw seven innings of two-run ball, allowing just five hits. He walked one and tied a career high with eight strikeouts.
UConn started off strong building off the energy of Game 1’s walk-off win. With two on, Feldstein doubled down the left-field line on a broken bat, scoring left fielder John Toppa. Feldstein later came across on a wild pitch and after one inning, it was 2-0.
“[USF starter Shane McClanahan] was a little emotional and we took advantage of a couple mistakes,” head coach Jim Penders said after the game. “It’s always good to get out in front no matter what game it is.”
The Bulls countered in the second, adding a run on a single from Andres Leal. Duke Stunkel Jr. singled to lead it off and moved into scoring position on the first of Feole’s two balks on the day.
“He sees a guy break and he just short-circuits,” Penders said. “He’s a high-energy guy... He’s got to slow the game back a little bit.”
Yahn hit an RBI double with two down in the third to increase the lead to 3-1.
Both USF starter Shane McClanahan and Feole settled in throughout the middle stages of the game, but each team added a run in the seventh to make it 4-2.
The Bulls got theirs on a solo home run from David Villar while UConn’s was more of the small-ball variety.
The Huskies worked three walks, two on McClanahan and one on Ryan Valdes to load the bases for Feldstein, who hit a ground out to bring across the run.
UConn added a couple of insurance runs in the eighth.
Prato had runners on the corners with two down. He hit a bloop single behind second base and Stefanski came hustling all the way around from first to score on the play and give the Huskies a 6-2 advantage.
“Credit Troy Stefanski for running hard and not assuming that ball was going to get caught,” Penders said.
Husky reliever John Russell got his 13th save with two perfect innings, tying Kevin Vance’s single-season record.
Before this weekend, USF was leading the conference and the Huskies were two games back in fourth place. The two teams are now tied while the other AAC competitors have yet to begin their weekend play.
UConn (28-20, 12-8) and USF complete their series on Saturday at 11 a.m. with Wills Montgomerie on the mound for the Huskies.