Dons’ ace allows just three hits in his complete game effort

by Joe DiBlasi

Matt Wyatt was masterful as he tossed a 3-hit shutout for Loyola.

Loyola got a superb complete-game 3-hit shutout from 6-foot-4 senior Matt Wyatt on Wednesday afternoon, as the Dons ran away from from No. 10 Mount St. Joseph from the start, winning 10-0 in an MIAA A Conference baseball game in Irvington.

Loyola (4-6 overall, 4-4) grabbed a quick two-run lead in the top of the first. Lead-off hitter Dom Dinoto singled to start the game, lefty-swinging Jeff Snider drew a walk, and after a wild pitch, first baseman Danny Sheeler singled both runners home.

That turned out to be all the scoring that the Dons would need on the day behind Virginia bound Wyatt, who scattered three hits and struck out 12, seven of which came in the last three innings of the contest.

The Dons added three more runs in the third inning, on four straight hits.They got two more in the sixth and tacked on three in the 7th.

Sheeler finished the day with three hits and three RBI’s, and Sean Kelly had two hits and four RBI’s to pace a 12 hit Blakefield attack.

Dinoto had a pair of singles and three runs scored; Snider had two hits and he scored two runs; and Emmett Reynolds added double and a single.

Wyatt said he felt good on the mound.

Danny Sheeler (left) had three hits and three RBI’s, and Sean Kelly had two hits and four RBI’s for Loyola

“I commanded my fastball and I kept them off-balance with my slider and change-up,” said Wyatt, who stayed in the low 90’s with his fastball. He was being clocked by professional scouts from the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets, who were sitting behind the backstop, as touched 93 mph a few times during the contest.

“St. Joe (9-4, 5-3) is a good team,” added the tall righty. “We came out hitting today. Everyone was ready to ‘barrel’ the first pitch. We drew a lot of walks got a lot of hits and I was able to do my job. I was able to get my slider over the plate and keep them off balance.”

St. Joe (9-4, 5-3) staged a mild threat in the first when Greib had a one out single, but was caught trying to steal second with Justin Looney at the plate. Looney eventually walked and did steal second, but Wyatt got out of the jam with a ground ball.

Wyatt retired the Gaels in order in the second, fourth and fifth innings. He allowed a single in the sixth, but still struck out the side, and finished the game off with a fly ball and pair of strikeouts, wrapped around a walk, in the seventh.

Loyola skipper Mike Kelly said Wyatt revealed his potential.

“Matt has the talent to do that every time he’s on the mound,” said Kelly. He needed an outing like that. There are scouts at every game watching him.”

Kelly also believes this victory can be springboard for his team.

The father of St. Joe starting pitcher Danny Howell got to see his son pitch, via live stream, as he serves with the US Army in Afghanistan.

“We struggled out of the gate this season in every facet,” said the skipper who led the Dons to the 2017 MIAA A Conference crown. “For us to come out and put it all together today, it’s something we really needed.”

Of special note, St. Joe pitcher Danny Howell may have absorbed the loss, but he came out a winner anyway. The game was lived streamed with the intent purpose of letting Howell’s father Denny, a law enforcement officer serving in Afghanistan with the U.S. Army, watch his son pitch.

LOY 203 002 3 — 10 12 0
MSJ 000 000 0 — 0 3 2
Wyatt and E. Reynolds; Howell, Palacorolla (3), Krohn (6), Lehrmann (7), and Looney
2B: LOY—E. Reynolds.
WP- LOY-Wyatt LP- MSJ-Howell