Emory & Henry Baseball Opens 2014 Season With A Doubleheader Split Against Berry
ROME, Ga. – The Emory & Henry College Baseball Team (1-1) picked up a doubleheader split in its first action of the 2014 season Saturday afternoon. The Wasps fell in the first game, 1-0, but responded to defeat the Vikings of Berry College (2-3) by a 4-1 score in the nightcap. The contests were played as seven-inning games to ensure that darkness would not be an issue.
Game One – Berry 1, Emory & Henry 0 (seven innings)
Back-to-back two-out singles in the top of the first by junior first baseman Bransen Christopher (Hickory, N.C.) and senior catcher Connor Wise (Cookeville, Tenn.) made it seem if the Wasps were going to get things going early, but they were unable to push the runners across.
Berry scored the only run of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Zach Farmer led off the inning, reaching on an error and after a walk and an infield single, the Vikings found themselves with the bases loaded. Sam Joyce grounded out to the shortstop, driving in Farmer for the score.
The Wasps kept themselves in the game with forcing the Vikings to strand a pair of runners in the bottom of the sixth, but were unable to get runners aboard in two of the final three innings.
Ryan O'Connell picked up the win in relief for Berry, allowing just one hit and one walk in four innings of work. Emory & Henry junior Aaron Sparks (Troutman, N.C.) was strong in his first outing as a Wasp, allowing an unearned run on just three hits and three walks despite the loss.
Game Two – Emory & Henry 4, Berry 1 (seven innings)
The Wasps made it 2-0 in the top of the third as senior right fielder Brogan Hoover (Stephens City, Va.) was hit by pitch to lead things off. Hoover scored from third on an error by the catcher and the second run was plated when junior shortstop Jordan Woullard (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) singled down the right field line to score sophomore centerfielder Brett Johnson (Sugar Grove, Va.).
Berry cut the margin in half with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Alex McGill walked and Farmer was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Kevin Scott hit a one-out single to drive home McGill two batters later.
Emory & Henry added a pair of insurance runs in the top of the seventh. Hoover got a lead-off single to left field and sophomore left fielder Ben Barnett (Knoxville, Tenn.) drew a walk to give the Wasps a pair of base runners. Johnson moved the runners into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt and Woullard loaded the bags with a walk. With two outs, an error by the second baseman saw Christopher safe at first and two runs scored for the final 4-1 margin.
Hoover and Woullard both had two hits and a run for E&H while Woullard added a RBI. Sophomore right-hander Ty Hill (Knoxville, Tenn.) picked up the complete-game win (1-0), scattering four runs and two walks over seven innings of work, striking out four.
Scott was two-for-three at the plate for Berry with a RBI while Ben Jernigan took the loss, allowing two runs on one hit in three innings pitched.
Emory & Henry and Berry will finish the series on Sunday with a nine-inning game. First pitch is set for noon.