FINAL: UNCW 4 (6-6), VCU 2 (10-2) - (Wilmington, N.C.) – Brooks Field
VCU STARTERS: Acker (RF), Bunn (LF), Cujas (3B), Machin (SS), Ayers (C), Cullen (CF), Davis (2B) Farrar (DH), Marino (1B), Dwyer (P)
UNCW STARTERS: Golden (CF), Thorburn (LF), LaGrange (3B), Dick (1B), Dunlap (DH), Farber (C), Bass (2B), Connelly (SS), Abshire (RF), Batts (P)
THE BASICS: The Rams and Seahawks scored two runs apiece in the first inning and settled into a pitching duel the rest of the way. Both clubs traded scoreless frames until the bottom of the eighth when UNCW scratched across two runs to win the game 4-2.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- VCU's offensive attack began early on Saturday with the first two Rams, Cody Acker and James Bunn, connecting on base hits. The next batter, Joey Cujas, doubled into centerfield to score Acker and move Bunn to third base.
- With Chris Ayers at the plate he grounded out to shortstop bringing home Bunn and giving the Rams a 2-0 lead early.
- The Seahawks wasted little time to get on the scoreboard themselves. With two outs Ryan LeGrange reached on a base hit and a Corey Dick two-run shot to left field tied the game 2-2.
- With a runner on at third and one out in the bottom of the fifth inning for UNCW, the Rams defense moved in to prevent a run from scoring. Robbie Thorburn hit a ground ball to Trevor Marino, the first baseman threw home to nab Abshire as he collided with catcher Chris Ayers and the senior was able to hold on to the ball and keep the game tied.
- VCU put the go ahead run in scoring position in the sixth, seventh and eighth but the Seahawks came up big each time, keeping the Black and Gold off the scoreboard.
- Back-to-back RBI singles from UNCW's Gavin Stupienski and Dillon Bass gave the hosts their first lead of the day in the bottom of the eighth.
- In the ninth, Matt Davis walked with one out to get aboard but the Rams were unable to advance him and the Seahwaks took game one of the series, 4-2.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
- Junior southpaw Heath Dwyer posted his best start of the season going seven strong innings, allowing just two earned runs and striking out two Seahawk hitters.
- James Bunn went 3-for-4 on the day with a run scored to ignite the top part of the Rams' lineup. The performance marked the sixth time the New Jersey native tallied multiple hits for the club, a team high.
- Bunn also extended his hitting streak to 10 games. The streak is the best of its kind this year for the Black and Gold.
- With his RBI single in the first frame Joey Cujas reached base for the 12th straight game. The slick fielding third baseman has now reached in every contest this year.
- The top of the lineup came up big for VCU batting 7-for-15 on the day, for a .467 average.
It was a good game, I thought both pitchers did a good job of settling in after the first inning and really giving both teams a quality start. Obviously Mat Batts was good for them tonight, he's a vertran pitcher who's pitched in a lot of big games and did a good job of keeping our guys off balance.
-VCU Head Coach Shawn Stiffler
This is one of those games when we look back on it we're going to wish we executed a little bit better on the mound early in the game with two outs. We did a good job getting guys on base and having opportunities, we were just unable to cash them in. Great thing his we get to play two games tomorrow and get back at it.
-VCU Head Coach Shawn Stiffler