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Baseball opens with split at James Madison
Bearcats win opener 8-4, lost nightcap 9-1; Nevares has big day
February 23, 2013Tweet
Contact: John Hartrick (firstname.lastname@example.org)
HARRISONBURG, Va.—Junior second baseman Daniel Nevares went a combined 6-for-8 to lead Binghamton baseball to a season-opening doubleheader split with host James Madison Saturday afternoon from Eagle Field at Veterans Memorial Park. The Bearcats took the opener 8-4 before JMU (1-4) gained the split with a 9-1 win in the nightcap.
In the opener, BU exploded out of the gate with four runs in the first inning and plated two more in the third and another two in the fourth. The Dukes scored twice each of the second and third innings before the pitching took over and each offense was held scoreless over the final three frames of the seven-inning game.
Senior first baseman Jordon Smucker belted a two-run homer to cap the four-hit, four-run first inning. Smucker’s two-out blast over the right field wall followed a Nevares RBI double. Junior center fielder Bill Bereszniewicz opened the game with a single and came around to score the first run on an RBI double by sophomore left fielder Jake Thomas.
The Dukes cut their deficit in half in the bottom of the frame thanks to a two-out, two-run double before BU got back to work in the third inning. Smucker delivered another RBI with a single and Nevares, who also singled, came around to score after a JMU throwing error. Up 6-2, BU gave two runs back on three hits in the bottom of the frame but completed the scoring with another pair in the fourth. Junior third baseman Brian Ruby brought in a run with a grounder and Nevares followed with an RBI double.
Nevares went 4-for-4 with 2 RBI, Smucker went 2-for-4 with the home run and 3 RBI and Thomas went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
On the hill, senior Jake Lambert (W, 1-0) received the win with five innings of work. Lambert scattered eight hits and four runs before giving way to sophomore Mike Kaufman, who pitched two hitless innings of relief. Kaufman struck out three.
Binghamton outhit JMU 9-8 and benefited from three host errors. The Bearcats didn’t commit an error in their first live action of the spring.
In game two, BU again struck first, thanks to an RBI single by Nevares in the first inning. But the Bearcats left the bases loaded and didn’t score over the final eight frames, stranding eight baserunners along the way. After producing four hits in the first inning, BU managed just four more hits over the remaining eight innings and was outhit 12-8.
James Madison began with two runs in the first and two in the second to chase starter Jay Lynch (L, 0-1). The Dukes then tacked on two in the fourth, one in the sixth and two more in the seventh for the final margin.
Lynch worked just 3.1 innings (4 ER) and sophomore Anthony Grillini followed with 3.2 innings (3 runs). Sophomore Jed Lemen worked the eighth inning and struck out three, including the final two with the bases loaded.
Nevares went 2-for-4, as did junior first baseman Brian Ruby and sophomore right fielder Zach Blanden.
The teams finish their four-game set with another doubleheader Sunday beginning at 11 a.m.