The West Virginia Mountaineers (23-19) strong start and a great outing from starting pitcher Christina Young defeats the Maryland Terrapins (19-25) 9-5 at Monongalia County Ball park on Tuesday night.
Maryland threatened to produce a couple runs in the first inning with a man on second and third, and two outs, but West Virginia starting pitcher Christian Young ended the inning striking out Will Watson.
The Mountaineers got off to a hot start in the bottom of the first and it started when lead-off hitter Braden Zarbnisky drew a walk, then Brandon White safely reaching first base after laying down a bunt.
Darius Hill laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Zarbnisky and White. Marques Inman cleared the bases hitting a hard ground ball down the third base line and third baseman Taylor Wright couldn’t knock it down as Inman took second.
Kyle Gray brought around Inman doubling to left centerfield and Gray took third base on a wild pitch then home after a wild throw to third capping off a four run first inning.
West Virginia continued to stay hot in the second inning. Jimmy Galusky started it off singling to right field, then Zarbnisky laid a bunt down the first base line and he avoided the tag from first baseman Kevin Biondic reaching first base.
Brandon White advanced Galusky and Zarnisky on sacrifice bunt to the pitcher.
Darius Hill drew a walk and with the Bases loaded, Marques Inman hit a long fly ball over the leftfielders head for a double scoring two.
Freshman Tyler Doanes doubled down the left field line scoring Inman and Hill. That finished off back to back innings with four runs and the Mountaineers had the early 8-0 lead.
“The last couple weeks our small ball game has really helped us. We’ve got guys that are really good at bunting and running and we haven’t been really good at it as a team till recently.” Said West Virginia head coach Randy Mazey. “Tonight, we laid down two or three bunts and put pressure on the defense.”
West Virginia starting pitcher Christian Young had a solid outing throwing for five innings and not giving up any runs. He only gave up two hits, a walk and had four strikeouts.
Mazey was pleased with his starting pitcher. “Christian attacked the strike zone, exactly what he needed to do. Went five strong, he could’ve gone more but he was throwing so good you want to think about saving him for the weekend. We got him out of there and got some guys in there that needed to see the mound.”
“To start the game off I thought the fastball was working really well. My main focus is going in there and keeping the ball low” said starting pitcher Christian Young. “Defense did great today. Just got to keep doing what I’m doing, and I know the defense will be behind me.”
Nick Snyder came in for the Mountaineers and he did not last long giving up a double and then walking two Terrapins. He did however strikeout Marty Costes before the two walks.
Now with one out, the bases loaded and the count two balls and no strikes, Randy Mazey went to Dillon Meadows.
Meadows gave up a hit, advancing all the base runners over one and Maryland was on the board. Then with the bases still loaded, Tayler Wright doubled down the right field line clearing the bases.
Wright stole third and on an errant throw from Gonzalez to third he scored completing a five-run inning for the Terps closing the gap to 8-5.
Meadows started the top of the seventh inning walking AJ Lee and that ended his night as Mazey went back to his bullpen.
Shane Ennis took the mound and walked the first batter he faced, but with runners on first and second, he struck out Marty Costes and catcher Ivan Gonzalez gunned down Lee trying to steal third. Ennis got out of the inning on a fly ball to left field from Kevin Biondic, hauled in by Braden Zarbnisky.
Jimmy Galusky started the bottom of the eighth inning with a solo homerun over the leftfield fence, adding a little more insurance for the Mountaineers heading to the ninth inning with a four run lead, 9-5.
Ennis got the first out of the inning on a deep fly ball to left field caught by Braden Zarbnisky at the warning track, then Mazey went to his bullpen for Tristan Hudson.
Hudson kept Maryland off the board finishing the game with two strikeouts and a walk as the Mountaineers beat the Terps by four.
West Virginia heads to Lawrence, Kansas this weekend to take on the Kansas Jayhawks in a three game series starting Friday May 4th at 7:00 pm est.