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Baseball splits doubleheader at VMI
Bearcats win opener 10-2, drop nightcap 4-2 to start three-game weekend series
March 7, 2014Tweet
Contact: John Hartrick (email@example.com)
LEXINGTON, Va. - Binghamton baseball (4-8) won the opener 10-2 but lost the nightcap 4-2 to come away with a doubleheader split at VMI (8-5 ) Saturday afternoon at Gray-Minor Stadium.
Sophomore infielder Reed Gamache drove in six runs and the Bearcats received two strong pitching performances but a pair of unearned runs in the late innings of Game 2 prevented a sweep.
In the opener, junior Jack Rogalla allowed just two singles in 7.0 strong innings and BU broke open a close game with five runs in the middle innings. Rogalla (W, 2-1) gave up a first-inning single and a fifth-inning hit and didn’t allow an earned run, lowering his season ERA to 2.16 after four starts.
The Bearcats scored one run in the second inning, three in the fifth, two in the sixth, one in the seventh and the final three in the ninth. Binghamton loaded the bases in four straight innings and got into VMI’s bullpen in the sixth.
Senior shortstop John Howell got things started with an RBI double in the second. Then in the fifth, BU loaded the bases with one out and DH Gamache delivered a two-run double to right center. Junior first baseman Brian Ruby added a sacrifice fly to give BU a 4-0 lead.
The Keydets got two runs back in their half of the fifth, using a single, walk and two Bearcat errors to plate a pair of unearned runs.
But BU responded in its next at-bat with a walk and three straight hits to restore its four-run cushion. Junior right fielder Zach Blanden hit an RBI single and senior center fielder Bill Bereszniewicz followed with a sacrifice fly to score sophomore third baseman David Schanz, who had doubled earlier in the frame.
One inning later, BU loaded the bases for the fourth straight inning and Bereszniewicz produced his second run-scoring fly to make it 7-2. The Bearcats then closed out the scoring with three more runs in the ninth. Gamache (3-for-5, 4 RBI) capped his outstanding game with a two-out, two-run single in the ninth. Two batters earlier, senior second baseman Daniel Nevares hit an RBI double.
Gamache raised his team-high average to .370 and also bumped his team-best RBI total to nine. Nevares and Blanden had two hits and an RBI apiece. Freshman Jextin Pugh pitched the final two scoreless innings.
Binghamton outhit VMI 11-3 and might’ve made it even more lopsided if not for 14 runners left stranded.
In game two, Gamache wasted no time continuing his hot bat. Bereszniewicz had a one-out single in the first inning and after Nevares and junior left fielder Jake Thomas were walked, Gamache stroked a two-run double to left center, giving the Bearcats a quick 2-0 lead.
VMI plated two runs on three hits to even the score in the fourth. With a two outs, a solo home run and two subsequent singles brought the Keydets back even at 2-2.
The Bearcats left the bases loaded in the top of the seventh (14 LOB for game) and VMI countered with two runs on two hits and an error to score the deciding runs in the bottom of the inning. Binghamton had a good chance in the eighth, putting runners on first and second with one out before the hosts turned a crucial double play to erase the threat.
In the ninth, BU moved the tying run to second base with one out after Nevares and Thomas drew back-to-back walks and Gamache put down a sacrifice bunt. But back-to-back strikeouts ended the game.
Sophomore starter Jake Cryts (L, 1-2) pitched 6.2 innings and scattered five hits and three earned runs. Cryts struck out four and didn’t walk a batter. Junior Greg Ostner went the final 1.1 innings, allowing just one hit.
VMI outhit BU 6-5 for the game. Howell had two hits to pace Binghamton.
The teams will wrap up the series with a single game at 1 p.m. on Sunday. Junior Mike Kaufman will make his first start of the season for the Bearcats.