Next stop for the Canisius baseball team … the NCAA Tournament.
The Golden Griffins earned a spot in the Big Dance by crushing Monmouth, 11-0, in championship round of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Tournament.
Canisius scored four times in its half of the first inning and that was more than enough run support for winning pitcher Charlie Sobierski (Lockport). The senior went six innings, striking out four and scattering three hits. J.P. Stevenson, the 2018 MAAC Pitcher of the Year, retired the side in order in the ninth to secure the Griffs' third trip to the NCAAs and first since 2015.
Senior Ryan Stekl (Lancaster) had the big hit in the first inning as his double down the right-field line with the bases loaded scored all three runners. He later scored on Brett Migliore's grounder. Stekl finished 3 for 4 with four RBIs.
Canisius then added three runs in the fifth and two each in the sixth and seventh, which was more than enough support for its pitching staff. Monmouth finished with just four hits.
Mark McKenna (Grand Island) finished with two hits, two RBIs and a run scored. Conner Morro had two hits and scored thrice. Canice Ejoh scored twice and drove in two.
Canisius will learn who its NCAA regional opponent is Monday during the selection show at noon on ESPNU.
Lefty J.P. Stevenson was named tournament MVP. He got the Griffs off to a winning start in the event by earning the mound win in a 5-4 victory over Niagara on Wednesday. McKenna, Stekl, Tyler Smith and John Conti also earned spots on the all-tournament team.
Canisius went 4-0 in the tournament.
Albany lacrosse loses
Albany yielded the game's first seven goals and couldn't climb out of that hole as the Great Danes' best season ever in men's lacrosse ends in the NCAA semifinal to Yale, 20-11, in Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass.
The Bulldogs scored the first seven goals of the game.
The game was the last for Albany star and ex-Bishop Timon-St. Jude standout Connor Fields. Fields scored three goals and had two assists. He ends the season with 86 points and caps his collegiate career with 199 goals, tied for third all-time in Division I.
Duke beat Maryland 13-8 in the other semifinal to end the Terrapins's reign as champions. Adam DiMillio is a defender for Maryland.