Late Heroics Propel Monarchs past Virginia Wesleyan

Jay Crusemire. Photo by: Jerry Sprouse - jerrysprouse.photoreflect.com
Jay Crusemire. Photo by: Jerry Sprouse - jerrysprouse.photoreflect.com

Late Heroics Propel Monarchs past Virginia Wesleyan

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C.- The Virginia Wesleyan College baseball team fought hard on Wednesday, forcing Methodist University to extra innings before falling 6-5 in 10 innings in non-conference action.

The Marlins got on the board first in the top of the second inning as Taylor Erby reached first on a hit by pitch, later coming around to score on a Brandon Kussmaul double to left field.

The Monarchs took advantage of a throwing error in the third to score three runs, just one earned.

Virginia Wesleyan evened the score back at three in the fifth on an RBI double double from Justin Erby and run-scoring single off the bat of Taylor Erby.

VWC took the lead again with a run in the sixth as Corey King tripled, scoring on Justin Erby's second double in as many at bats. The Marlins added another in the top of the seventh as Kussmaul tripled home Austin Obenour.

Methodist evened the score in the bottom of the seventh, striking the frame with a double and hit by pitch with one out. A single by Matthias Carter loaded the bases, setting up a force at any base. Brennan Brown singled to shortstop to plate Alex Kachler to make the score 5-4. Lucas Scott grounded out to first as Davis Cass raced home for the tying run.

Both bullpens posted scoreless eighth and ninth innings to force extra innings.

After holding the Marlins without a hit in the top of the 10th, Brown singled to lead off the bottom of the frame before moving to second on a sacrifice bunt. A walk put the runners on first and second, forcing the Marlins to go to the bullpen. Tyler Hardee singled a ball out to center, chasing Brown home with the game-winning run.

Logan Haines (3-0) picked up the win for Methodist (16-20), throwing 1.2 innings of perfect relief. Pete Wildeboer and Brown had two hits each.

Jay Crusemire drew the start and threw the first three innings. Kussmaul and Justin Erby had two hits and two RBI each while King contributed two hits and scored a pair of runs.

Virginia Wesleyan (18-15/9-6) will host Emory & Henry College (15-19/5-9) Saturday for Senior Day. The doubleheader is slated for a noon first pitch.