After returning from the Russmatt Central Florida Invitational and beating the brakes off of Haverford by a score of 18-0 on Monday, March 21, Rowan baseball took the field in Glassboro for the first time this year to face off against York College.
The result was an exciting one for Profs fans. Led by junior pitcher Eli Atiya and sophomore third baseman Anthony Schooley, the Profs recorded their second consecutive win by a final score of 6-1.
For Atiya, being back home was a breath of fresh air after two long road trips to start the season.
“Our mindset at home is that we’re not going to lose in front of our parents and fans,” Atiya said. “It was awesome to get back out here after being in Florida and Virginia.”
Head Coach Mike Dickson feels the same way about being back in Glassboro.
“It’s always great to be back here in Glassboro, it’s been a while,” Coach Dickson said. “It’s always good to get a W here in front of our home fans.”
In what was a slower offensive day than Monday, Atiya managed to keep the Profs in the driver’s seat for the majority of the game with his stellar pitching. Atiya pitched seven innings of one-run baseball, while only allowing two hits along the way, notching the win and advancing his record to 3-0 on the young season.
In the eyes of Coach Dickson, their pitching is the most important factor in the team being where they want to be at the end of the season.
“Pitchers control the game,” Coach Dickson said. “We say it all the time, it’s the one sport where, on defense, you have the ball… That’s [York] a really good team over there. You got two returning All-Americans in the middle of that lineup, so for us to two-hit them, that’s a really good job by Eli and Mike Shannon today.”
At this point in the season, the Profs have a respectable 10-3 record. Even with the hot start and the many positives up to this point, Coach Dickson believes that there is still room for improvement.
“We have to continue to be consistent,” Dickson said. “Consistent defense, we have to hit with runners in scoring position, and we have to continue to pitch. If we do those three things, we’re going to be alright.”
Atiya believes that there is one key thing that can continue to push the team forward.
“We can never be satisfied,” Atiya said. “There’s been times this year where we’ve played a team that we think we’re better than and we came out flat and they beat us. We need to continue to dominate… Once we get that lead, it’s over.”
Coach Dickson and company will now have some time to decompress before a double-header against Messiah University on Saturday, March 26.
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