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Bryant offense erupts, Bulldogs complete sweep

Jack Ipsen Photo
Jack Ipsen Photo

CULLOWHEE, N.C. – Redshirt freshman Luke Garofalo (Middletown, Conn.) tossed six innings of two-run ball and the Bryant University baseball team erupted for a season-high 11 runs on a season-high 18 hits on its way to a 11-4 victory over Western Carolina on Wednesday, completing a midweek sweep.

Garofalo was the benefactor of Bryant's offensive outburst, surrendering just two runs on six hits over a career-high six innings.

The offense did the rest. Bryant had 18 hits, including two doubles, three triples and a grand slam. The Bulldogs also stole a season-high eight bases. All nine players in the starting lineup recorded a hit, with six registering multiple hits.

Junior Shane Kelly (Sewell, N.J.) had four hits, sophomore Jake Gustin (Peabody, Mass.) had a double and two triples and senior James Ciliento (Mahwah, N.J.) hit a ninth-inning grand slam to put the game out of reach.

Game Information
Bryant 11, Western Carolina 5
Bryant (4-11), Western Carolina (8-8)
Location: Childress Field and Hennon Stadium (Cullowhee, N.C.)
W|L|S: Luke Garofalo (2-0) | Dawson Elder (0-1)

Key Moment

  • Bryant put together four-straight two-out hits to score two runs in the top of the first. The Bulldogs never trailed again.
  • Garofalo made the lead stand as he stranded runners on second and third in the second and a runner at second in the third.
  • Ciliento put the game away with a grand slam in the top of the ninth.          

How it Happened

  • Gustin started Bryant's two-out rally in the first with a triple to dead center. Senior Gaby Cruz (Miami, Fla.), Kelly and junior Nick Viscariello (Plymouth, Mass.) followed with three consecutive singles to make it 2-0.
  • WCU cut the deficit to one on an RBI double in the second. Garofalo then got consecutive ground outs to strand runners on second and third.
  • Bryant pushed the lead to 4-1 with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth. Sophomore Matt Woods (Warwick, R.I.) walked with one out, stole second, went to third on a single and scored on a bunt single from Ciliento. Gustin followed with an RBI double to center.
  • Woods got the Bulldogs going again in the sixth, walking and stealing second. Freshman Derek Smith (Arundel, Maine) brought him home with a single up the middle to make it 5-1.
  • The Catamounts threatened in the sixth, plating a run to make it 5-2. WCU had runners on first and second with one out but Garofalo induced a 6-4-3 double play to end the threat.  
  • WCU made it a one-run game with a pair of solo home runs in the bottom of the seventh.
  • Bryant answered with a huge run in the eighth thanks to a Gustin triple. Woods walked to start things and Gustin scored him with a long triple to right field.
  • The Bulldogs put the game away with a five-run ninth. Sophomore Vincenzo Castronovo (Utica, N.Y.) scored the first run with a bunt single and Ciliento put an exclamation point on the afternoon with a towering grand slam to left center.


  • Bryant scored a season-high 11 runs on a season-high 18 hits.
  • Bryant turned four double plays in the game.
  • Garofalo allowed two runs on six hits, walked three and struck out three.
  • Junior Matthew Stansky (Douglas, Mass.) tossed a scoreless eight.
  • Smith finished 2-for-6 with a stolen base, an RBI and a run scored.
  • Ciliento was 2-for-5 with a grand slam, five RBI and a stolen base.
  • Gustin went 3-for-5 with a double, two triples, two RBIs and a run scored.
  • Kelly finished 4-for-5 with a triple.
  • Viscariello posted two hits, an RBI and a pair of stolen bases.
  • Castronovo finished 2-for-5 with a double, an RBI, a run scored and a stolen base.
  • Woods went 1-for-1 with four walks, four runs scored and two stolen bases.

Notes and Notables

  • Bryant is now 2-0 against Western Carolina.
  • Bryant has won back-to-back games for the first time this season.
  • Garofalo notched the longest outing of his career and posted his first-career quality start.
  • Gustin posted his fifth multi-hit game of the year and has multiple hits in four-straight games.
  • Gustin now leads the team with seven doubles.
  • Gustin becomes the first Bulldogs since Nick Angelini (Mar. 21, 2017) to hit two triples in a game. He now has three career triples.
  • Gustin went 5-for-9 with a double, two triples, two RBI and three runs scored in the two games with Western Carolina.
  • Viscariello posted his second-straight multi-hit game and the fourth multi-hit game of the season.  
  • Smith has posted multiple hits in three of his first five career games.
  • Woods has stolen five bases over the last three games. He finished the two-game series with five walks, four runs scored and three stolen bases.
  • Woods becomes the first Bulldog since Chris Wright (Mar. 18, 2017) to walk four times in a game.
  • Kelly's four hits match his career high. He last accomplished the feat on Apr. 13, 2018 at FDU.
  • Kelly has now tripled twice this year.
  • Kelly also went 5-for-9 in the series.
  • Bryant stole eight bases today, 13 in two games vs. Western Carolina and now has 39 on the year.   

Up Next

Bryant travels to Durham, North Carolina, to open a three-game series with N.C. Central on Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.