QUEENS, N.Y. - Senior Mike Gerber had a career day, highlighted by two home runs and six RBI, to lead the Creighton baseball team to a 15-5 win over St. John's on Sunday, May 11.
The win moved Creighton to 27-15-1 on the season and put the Bluejays in sole possession of first place in the BIG EAST Conference at 12-3. St. John's fell to 32-17 overall and 11-4 in conference play.
Coming off their dramatic win less than an hour before first pitch, the Bluejays went right back to work in the opening frame as Gerber blasted his seventh home run of the season over the right field wall to give Creighton a 2-0 lead.
Sophomore Joey Mancuso pushed the lead to 3-0 in the second with an RBI single up the middle, but St. John's pulled within a run at 3-2 with a couple of runs in the bottom of the frame.
Creighton responded with four runs in the third to reclaim control. Sophomore Ryan Fitzgerald opened the inning with a double to right. He went to third on an error in the outfield and scored on a single from junior Jake Peter. Gerber followed with his second home run in as many at-bats, hitting this one into the St. John's bullpen to make it 6-2. Consecutive errors by the Red Storm led to another Bluejay run to make it 7-2 heading to the bottom of the third.
The Bluejays added a run in the fourth on singles by senior Brad McKewon and Peter as well as a wild pitch.
St. John's, however, was able to push across a run in the fourth and two more in the fifth to make it 8-5.
The game remained 8-5 until the top of the eighth inning, when Creighton exploded for seven runs. McKewon and Fitzgerald opened the inning with singles, then Peter smacked an RBI double down the left field line to make it 9-5. After a St. John's pitching change Gerber blasted a double through an opening in the left field wall, yes through the wall, to make it 11-5. Creighton went on to add four more runs before the inning was complete, including a three-run bomb from senior Ben Lahn to make it 15-5.
Sophomore Mark Lukowski held the Red Storm scoreless in 2.1 innings of relief to move to 2-0 on the season. St. John's starter, Chris Kalica, allowed seven runs (six earned) on six hit and a walk in two innings to fall to 6-2.
Offensively the Bluejays finished with 17 hits, including four hits by Peter and three each for Gerber as well as McKewon. Gerber closed the game with a career-high six RBI.
Creighton returns to action on Tuesday, May 13 as the Bluejays play a day/night doubleheader against Stephen F. Austin at 12:30 pm, then faces Nebraska at 7 p.m.