The St. John’s Red Storm clinched its conference-record eighth Big East regular season championship Saturday with a 5-0 win over the Xavier Musketeers at Jack Kaiser Stadium.
The Red Storm won the game behind a dominant pitching performance by Ryan McCormick, who tossed his first career complete game shutout and recorded a career-high nine strikeouts in the contest.
St. John’s got on the board early by sending eight men to the plate in the bottom of the first inning and took a 2-0 lead. Robert Wayman began the rally with a one-out single. Michael Donadio followed with another single and Zach Lauricella got on base on a fielder’s choice to load the bases. Jarred Mederos smacked a two-run single into center, giving his team the early lead.
The Red Storm added to its lead in the bottom of the third with a string of singles. Tyler Sanchez started things with a single up the middle. Wayman added another single through the left side and Lauricella singled to left, driving in Sanchez to make it a 3-0 ballgame.
Xavier tried to rally back in the top of the fourth, getting the first two batters on base. A single by David Morton led off the inning and Nate Soria followed with a walk, but McCormick retired the next three batters to get out of the jam.
St. John’s padded its lead in the bottom of the seventh inning. Donadio drilled a leadoff double into left field, Matt Harris followed with an RBI triple, giving the Red Storm a 4-0, and Mederos lifted a sacrifice fly to left, bringing the lead to 5-0.
McCormick finished the game by retiring the last seven batters he faced.
The Red Storm completed the three-game sweep of the Musketeers on Sunday by posting an 8-6 win. They continue the season with a game against St. Peter’s on Tuesday, before ending their 2015 campaign with a three-game set against Southern Illinois.