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Emory & Henry Baseball Takes Two From Virginia Wesleyan, 6-4 And 9-8, Saturday In ODAC Road Doubleheader

-photo courtesy of Joey Gass
-photo courtesy of Joey Gass

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Emory & Henry College Baseball Team (17-19, 7-9 ODAC) kept its postseason hopes alive with a doubleheader sweep of Virginia Wesleyan College (18-17, 9-8 ODAC) Saturday on the road. The Wasps took the pair of Old Dominion Athletic Conference games by scores of 6-4 and 9-8.

The Wasps earn their first sweep of the Marlins since the 2012 campaign and make it their third conference doubleheader sweep of the year. E&H has now set a new program best for overall wins in a season as they also snapped a five-game losing streak.

The Basics
– Emory & Henry 6, Virginia Wesleyan 4
GAME TWO – Emory & Henry 9, Virginia Wesleyan 8
LOCATION – Virginia Beach, Virginia – Kenneth R. Perry Field
RECORDS – Emory & Henry (17-19, 7-9 ODAC); Virginia Wesleyan (18-17, 9-8 ODAC)

Game One
- E&H got out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first on a double to centerfield by sophomore third baseman Eli Straw (Radford, Va.), driving in sophomore catcher Kodi McIlwraith (Roanoke, Va.), who singled on the previous at bat.
- The Marlins tied things up at 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth when Deon Hammond singled up the middle to plate Corey King.
- In the sixth, Emory & Henry added two runs on a single by freshman catcher Corbin Hockensmith (Huntersville, N.C.) and a squeeze play by junior first baseman Carson Bryant (Hickory, N.C.) for a 3-1 advantage.
- The Wasps made it 5-1 in the top of the eighth, scoring a pair of runs from a throwing error by the pitcher on a sacrifice bunt by Hockensmith.
- VWC drew the score to 5-4 in the bottom half of the frame, highlighted by a RBI single by C.J. Lindsay.
- E&H got an insurance run in the ninth to make the final score 6-4 on another squeeze play. McIlwraith's bunt single plated junior centerfielder Josh Macek (Concord, N.C.), who led off the inning with a triple.
- Freshman pitcher Toby Robson (Blythewood, S.C.) earned this win, allowing three runs on six hits with two strikeouts in seven innings. Freshman Alex Laws (Hudson, N.C.) picked up his third save of the year, allowing just one run on two hits in the final two innings of the game.
- Patrick Monteverde gave up three runs on eight hits with five strikeouts in six innings pitched in taking the loss.

Game Two
- The Wasps again started off quickly, scoring a pair of runs in the top of the first. Straw had a RBI double while sophomore first baseman Logan Forster (Christiansburg, Va.) also plated a run with a base hit.
- Virginia Wesleyan tied the game, 2-2, in the bottom of the third. Brandon Kussmaul and King notched back-to-back doubles to highlight the frame.
- The Emory & Henry offense came alive in the fifth, scoring five runs on three hits and two errors by the Marlins' defense. Junior left fielder Zach Smith (Powder Springs, Ga.) drove in a pair with a double down the right field line to aid the Wasps in taking a 7-2 advantage.
-  VWC put up single runs in the fifth and sixth, but E&H was able to counteract those scores with a two-run sixth, making the score 9-4 with three innings left.
- Virginia Wesleyan got a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh and another two in the ninth to draw the margin to 9-8. The rally would come up short, however and Emory & Henry completed its series sweep.
- Sophomore right-hander Gavin Felty (Bristol, Va.) earned the win, allowing six runs on nine hits with two strikeouts in six innings of work. Senior Nick Lesnak (Blountville, Tenn.) was credited with the save, facing four batters in the ninth for E&H.
- Nick Bay suffered the loss, allowing seven runs (five unearned) on six hits with two strikeouts in five innings pitched.

Emory & Henry Individual Leaders
- Straw put up four runs on four hits with two RBI, stroking a pair of doubles while McIlwraith went three-for-five with two runs and a RBI in game one of the doubleheader.
- Macek had four hits, two runs, and a RBI while sophomore shortstop Ross French (Bridgewater, Va.) had a pair of runs on two hits and sophomore Daulton Horne (Bristol, Va.) scored three times.

Virginia Wesleyan Individual Leaders
- Kussmaul went five-for-nine on the afternoon with three runs scored and two doubles while King had a trio of doubles, two RBI and a three runs scored.
- Hammond notched a run and a RBI on three base knocks while Lindsay scored two runs on two extra-base hits with a pair of RBI.

Up Next
- Emory & Henry will host Roanoke College in an Old Dominion Athletic Conference single game on Tuesday at 3:00 p.m.
- The contest was originally scheduled to be played on Wednesday, April 19, but inclement weather and wet field conditions forced the game to be postponed.