BEREA, KY- The Berea College baseball team finally got off the schneid in their third game against the Grove City College Wolverines, losing 2-3 and 3-8 in the first two games, and winning 8-2 in the series finale.
Friday's game placed Chad Brown on the mound for Berea, who was able to keep the Wolverines scoreless for seven and a third innings before exiting the game. Brown's (7.1 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 6 K) stellar performance was drowned out by significant bullpen troubles, as the next three pitchers walked a total of 5 batters in 1.2 innings, allowing the Wolverines to take a 1-3 lead, and eventually win 2-3 after snuffing out a late rally by the Mountaineers. Tyler Plageman went 2-2 on the day, reaching base four times, and tripling to give the Mountaineers a chance in the 9th.
Saturday's doubleheader showcased the effort of Matt Wilburn, who was unable to get off on a good start in the first inning, giving up four runs in the first inning, and surrendering two more in the third after a rain delay. Michael Smither bounced back from his sub-par outing at Kentucky State by coming in and dealing for four innings (4 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 6 SO). Berea was not able to amount to much offensively, only scoring three runs, leading to a 3-8 loss. Evan Hackney had a perfect day at the plate, however, hitting a sacrifice fly, walking once, tripling, and hitting the first home run for the 2016 Mountaineer season.
The second game for the Mountaineers was just what the doctor ordered for the ailing ballplayers in blue. Josh Wilson threw a hitless three innings to keep the Wolverines in human form while the Mountaineers were able to stack a 7-0 lead on the board. Griffen Norris pumped 2.2 innings out of the pen, surrendering only two hits, and striking out three. Chase O'Connor slammed the door with an astounding three strikeouts against three batters in the 7th inning. Evan Hackney (3-4, 2 R) and Tyler Plageman (1-1, 3 R, 3BB), again, provided the kind of offensive effort BC needed to clinch their first win of the season.
The Mountaineer baseball team will be back in action on the road against the University of the Cumberlands on Tuesday. Projected starting pitching is yet to be announced. For more Berea baseball coverage, make sure you go to our social media pages @ Bluecrewnews on Facebook and Twitter.