LEXINGTON, Va. — The Washington and Lee baseball team scored three runs in the bottom of the ninth inning on Thursday, but it wasn't enough as the team fell, 8-7, to Southern Virginia at Cap'n Dick Smith Field.
The Generals (7-8) entered the bottom of the ninth trailing, 8-4. Senior right fielder Will Salley (Augusta, Ga./Westside) led off with a long fly ball to left center. Initially it was called a triple, but after the umpires conferred, they ruled the ball hit off of a light post behind the fence and bounced back into the field of play. With the change, Salley earned his first home run of the season, and cut the deficit to three (8-5).
Senior Alex Maragos (Chicago, Ill./Loyola Academy) then connected on a single through the right side and was pinch run for by first-year Michael DeMatteis (West Chester, Pa./Malvern Prep). Junior Keegan Dolan (Bethesda, Md./Landon) was the next batter and was hit by a pitch to put two runners on base. The Knights (11-5) responded with a pitching change and brought lefthander Tyler King (San Ramon, Calif./CSU-East Bay) into the game.
King forced senior Alex Mait (Chesterfield, Va./Clover Hill) into a groundout to third, but both DeMatteis and Dolan advanced one base. Senior Mike Savas (Bernardsville, N.J./Delbarton) brought both runners home (8-7) with a two-run double down the left field line.
With the tying run on second, senior Joe Scalzo (Ridgefield, Conn./Brunswick) came to the plate as the potential winning run. Scalzo ripped a 0-1 pitch foul down the left field line that missed being the game-winning home run by a couple of feet. King eventually forced Scalzo to hit a soft line out to first to end the contest.
Senior Ed Greenhalgh (Roy, Utah/Roy) earned the victory for SVU after pitching 5.0 innings. He gave up three earned runs on four hits and struck out three. King earned his first save of the year in getting the final two outs of the game.
The Generals used four pitchers with starter Jake Rudolph (Cordova, Tenn./Memphis University School) taking his first loss of the year. He allowed four runs in 2.0 innings on four hits. Sophomores Matt Hedberg (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park), Andrew Shott (Bethesda, Md./Georgetown Prep) and Cory Smith (Roanoke, Va./Hidden Valley) combined for 7.0 innings of relief, and gave up four runs (three earned) with three strikeouts.
W&L took a one-run lead in the first on a RBI-single by Maragos. The Knights responded with four in the second. Junior Josh Linn (Muskogee, Okla./Muskogee) lined a one-run double to left, first-year Nicholas Lyons (Bryson City, N.C./Southern Utah University) hit a RBI single to left, junior Mitch Stevenson (Muskogee, Okla./Muskogee) had a RBI groundout and sophomore C.J. Andrus (Federal Way, Wash./Decatur) stole home on a double steal to put the score at 4-1.
The Blue and White got one back in the fourth when Dolan scored on a wild pitch, after leading off the inning with a triple. Linn put the lead back up to three, 5-2, on a RBI single up the middle in the fifth
The Generals again cut the deficit to two, 5-3, on a RBI groundout by Salley in the bottom of the fifth, but the Knights had an answer in the sixth when Lyons scored on a wild pitch. W&L tallied one in the seventh following a RBI single to right by Maragos to shrink the advantage to two (6-4).
SVU put its final two runs on the board in the ninth. Mitchell Mantle (St. George, Utah/Dixie) singled to right, which plated Stevenson. Then the Knights successfully executed their second double steal of the game with Stevenson taking home plate.
Salley finished the game 2-for-4 with a home run, two RBIs and three runs scored. Maragos went 3-for-4 with two RBIs. Linn and Lyons each had two hits for SVU with Linn leading the team with two RBIs.
Senior Jonathan Stutts (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Country Day) connected on a triple in the game, which was his second of the season. He now has 10 in his career, which puts him fourth on the program's all-time list. Michael Hanson '03 is currently third with 13.
The Generals return to ODAC play on Saturday when they play a doubleheader at Guilford at 12:00 pm.
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