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UConn baseball completes comeback to beat Rhode Island, 9-6

The Huskies’ bats came alive during their windy series opener against the Rams.

UConn’s Andy Hague #6 celebrates after the Huskies went ahead in the seventh inning.
Ian Bethune/The UConn Blog

UConn baseball opened up their first series at Elliot Ballpark with a fireworks show at the plate, beating Rhode Island 9-6 behind 13 hits, two doubles, and their first three home runs in the new home of the Huskies.

“My father always used to say, ‘We should put some runs in the bank for tomorrow,’ and that’s what it was like today,” Penders said. “The way the wind was blowing today, you knew it was going to be an offensive day.”

UConn came from behind to move to 8-11 on the season, starting the series out on a high note before their doubleheader on Saturday.

Some good hitting with runners in scoring position helped UConn secure the win. Down 5-3 in the bottom of the sixth, Reggie Crawford came up with a clutch two-out single to drive home Erik Stock and Chris Brown and tie the game at five.

The next inning, Andy Hague came up with a hard-hit ball to third base that was overthrown, scoring Stock again for the go-ahead run.

Kyler Fedko continued his red-hot hitting streak with a pair of bombs over the bullpen in left field to give the Huskies some insurance on the night. He now has 3 home runs on the year, three off the pace set by Crawford.

UConn struck first in the second inning with back-to-back-to-back doubles from Christian Fedko, Kevin Ferrer, and Erik Stock.

Ben Casparius didn’t have his best start as a Husky — allowing five earned runs on six hits through 5.0 innings of work — but Kenny Haus was able to come in and right the ship. The redshirt junior entered the game during the sixth frame and fired 2.1 innings of scoreless ball, allowing just one hit and not handing out any free passes.

“We had a good day when our ace wasn’t quite our ace,” Penders said. “Ben showed he was human, and just had one rough inning.”

Chris Winkel made just about the best pinch-hit appearance out there to give the Huskies some needed insurance, with a two-run homer to the right of the batters’ eye that gave UConn a 9-5 lead.

The wind picked way up in the ninth inning with Caleb Wurster on the mound for the Huskies. He made things interesting by walking a few and hitting a batter before managing to get out of the inning with a strikeout.

UConn will face Rhode Island next on Saturday in a doubleheader, with Sunday’s game moved up a day due to the threat of inclement weather. Austin Peterson will start the first game, with Joe Simeone likely to start the second.