WINCHESTER, Va. – The third-ranked Salisbury University baseball team scored nine unanswered runs in the final two innings to finally put away the 15th-ranked Shenandoah Hornets, surviving a 19-10 barnburner on Sunday afternoon at Bridgeforth Field.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Both teams traded a pair of runs in the first inning. Salisbury opened the scoring on an RBI groundout by Matt Padeway, followed by a run-scoring single by Luke Weddell. In the Shenandoah first, Keegan Woolford singled home a run, stole second and scored on a Pearce Bucher single to tie it 2-2.
- The Sea Gulls kept the engine rolling in the top of the second. With two out, Kavi Caster drew a walk and stole second. Cameron Hyder followed with a single to drive in Caster, then Padeway doubled and Weddell tripled to plate two more, making it 5-2 Salisbury.
- The Hornets responded with a five-run push in the second, capped by a two-run homer by Woolford, swinging it back to the home side 7-5.
- Salisbury answered Shenandoah's rally with a four-run flourish in the third. With the bases loaded and no out, Justin Meekins got hit by a pitch, then Caster hit into an RBI fielder's choice to tie the game. Trent Saunders then scored the go-ahead run on a wild pitch, and Hyder rolled into an RBI groundout to put the Sea Gulls up 9-7.
- In the top of the fourth, Saunders hit a sac fly to get Salisbury into double digits at 10-7. Shenandoah followed by scoring the next three, including two in the bottom of the fourth on a Woolford RBI groundout and Bucher RBI single.
- Grant Thompson homered in the bottom of the sixth to bring the score even at 10-10.
- After being held off the scoreboard for three straight innings, Salisbury got the offense rolling again in the eighth. Saunders banged a one-out double to right center, then Meekins dropped a single into left to bring Saunders home with the go-ahead run. Meekins went to second on the play thanks to an error, and Caster in turn singled Meekins home to put Salisbury up 12-10.
- In the ninth, the Sea Gulls erupted and finally put the game out of reach. With the bases loaded and no out, Zach Geesaman and Saunders each drove in one on back-to-back singles. Meekins brought home another on a sac fly, then Caster doubled home two more to make it 17-10.
- Hyder then hit a grounder to short that resulted in a two-base error, allowing Caster to come home. Padeway finished off the rally with an RBI single, and Salisbury found itself with a decisive 19-10 lead after a seven-run ninth.
SALISBURY GAME NOTES
- The first five hitters in the Sea Gull batting order became a wrecking crew, combining to go 11-for-27 with 10 runs and 14 RBIs.
- Kavi Caster stood out from the two-hole, going 3-for-6 with a double, four runs, four RBIs and two stolen bases.
- Matt Padeway went 2-for-6 with a double, run and three runs driven in, while Luke Weddell finished 3-for-5 with a triple, run, two walks and two RBIs.
- Clayton Dwyer (3-0) was Salisbury's winning pitcher for the third consecutive game and the third time in nine days. After starting and tossing five scoreless innings on Thursday, Dwyer finished off Shenandoah with 2.2 scoreless frames, allowing just one hit and striking out three. Dwyer has strung together 21.2 consecutive scoreless innings since March 20.
- Jackson Balzan failed to get out of the second inning in his shortest start of the season, allowing four runs on two hits and three walks in one-plus inning.
- Xavier Marmol righted the Salisbury ship in the middle frames, allowing one run in three innings of relief before handing the ball to Dwyer to shut it down.
- Salisbury now improves to 3-1 against ranked foes this season, with all three wins coming against top-15 teams.
SHENANDOAH GAME NOTES
- Keegan Woolford went 3-for-5 with a homer, stolen base and four RBIs in the cleanup slot for the Hornets.
- Grant Thompson finished 3-for-3 with three runs and two RBIs, including the game-tying solo shot in the sixth.
- Cade Templeton (0-1) absorbed the loss in relief for Shenandoah, giving up five runs on six hits over three innings.
- Jake Newquist got shelled early and didn't make it through the second inning, surrendering five runs on five hits in 1.2 frames.
- The Sea Gulls and Hornets will tangle one more time on Monday afternoon in what is scheduled to be Salisbury's final nonconference game of the regular season, as well as its final contest against a ranked foe.
- First pitch from Bridgeforth Field is set for 2 p.m.