MALIBU, Calif. – The VCU Baseball team saw its trip to California come to an end with an 11-2 setback to host Pepperdine on Wednesday afternoon at Eddy D. Field Stadium.
"Today we just got behind early, made some mistakes and couldn't capitalize on our chances," said VCU Head Coach Paul Keyes. "Had we got those runs, it would have allowed us to get a cushion and given us a lead. The five-run innings today and yesterday really hurt us. I am bit concerned that we lost our process a little bit, in terms of how we wanted to play. We broke down and reverted to some of the things we did in the past, so that is a negative for us right now."
The Rams had a chance early to get a lead, with junior infielder Jordan Weymouth drawing a walk with one out. Sophomore infielder Joey Cujas followed that up with a double down the third base line, putting Weymouth at third in the process. After redshirt junior Brent Mikionis (pictured right) drew a walk to load up the bases, the Rams had a player strikeout and another ground out in the infield to end the charge.
The Waves took full advantage of the situation, creating five runs in the top of the first, capped off by a home run from Miles Silverstein.
VCU continued to mount pressure in the top of the second and third, putting runners in scoring position, but were unable to come away with runs.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Waves again posted five runs on the scoreboard. Pepperdine pushed across its final run of the contest in the bottom of the fifth.
The Rams would net a pair of runs in the top of the seventh, kicked started by a single from sophomore outfielder Bill Cullen. After a fly out for the first out of the inning, junior infielder Nick Kime delivered a double into left center, scoring Cullen all the way from first. Kime would later score on a single to right field by Mikionis.
Pepperdine would use four pitchers in the game, with Matt Maurer earning the victory with five innings pitched and no runs allowed.
VCU will return back to the East Coast for its next challenge, with Binghamton coming to Richmond for a three-game series at The Diamond.
After eight days in California and a Binghamton squad set to play its first game of the season, Coach Keyes sees this as an emotional series.
"I just told the guys that this will be a mentally tough one for us on Friday. Its Binghamton's first game, so they will be ready to come get us. They will have that same focus that we showed last Friday when we played at Long Beach State. So we have to be prepared. We want to get back to work because we have a lot of work to do."
First pitch at The Diamond is scheduled for 3 p.m.