Eagles Defeat No. 22 Shenandoah, 9-6
BRIDGEWATER, Va. - Bridgewater College jumped out to a quick 9-1 lead and held on for a 9-6 victory Thursday afternoon over No. 22 Shenandoah University. The victory is the second this season for the Eagles against a Top 25 opponent.
The Hornets scored first on a run-scoring triple by Cory Nelson for a 1-0 lead in the top of the third.
Bridgewater answered with five runs in the bottom of the third and four more in the fourth to lead 9-1.
Nick Fulk and Darren Yoder led off the third with singles and Devon Snow reached first when the throw on his sacrifice bunt attempt pulled the fielder off the bag, loading the bases with no one out. Bryan Sanderson then lined a shot up the middle that hit Hornets pitcher Bryce Sears in the leg. Sears picked the ball up and retired Sanderson at first, but Fulk scored from third, tying the score at 1-1. Jay Thompson singled up the middle to score two runs and Thompson scored on a double off the bat of Andrew Hacker, giving the Eagles a 4-1 lead. Hacker later scored on Evan Smith's single to the hole at short to put the Eagles on top 5-1.
The Eagles struck again in the fourth to pad the lead. Yoder led off with a single and Snow followed with a bunt single. Both runners moved up on Sanderson's sacrifice bunt and both scored on a double by Thompson, making the score 7-1. After Hacker was hit by a pitch, Jonathan Mason drove home Thompson with a single through the right side for an 8-1 BC lead. The next hitter, Alex Nuttycombe, ripped a double down the left-field line to score Mason, making the score 9-1.
The Hornets started chipping away at the lead and used the long ball to get back in the game against Eagles' starter Kevin Chandler.
Jake Pendergraft led off the fifth with a triple and scored on a single by Tucker Brown. Nelson then belted a long homer to leftcenter, trimming the BC lead to 9-4.
In the sixth, Joey Donofrio and Pendergraft blasted back-to-back homers to cut the Eagles lead to 9-6.
The Eagles went to the pen in the seventh and sophomore Kyle Henshaw blanked the Hornets over the final three innings. In the ninth, Shenandoah brought the tying run to the plate after a walk and a single by Nick Beall put two runners on with one out. Henshaw fanned Dan Powers and retired Corbin Lucas on a fly ball to center to preserve the 9-6 victory.
Chandler struggled through six innings to get the win and improve to 2-0 on the season. He allowed six runs on 10 hits while striking out four and walking two. Henshaw allowed two hits in three scoreless innings to record his second save of the season. He struck out two and walked one.
Thompson led the offense with a 3-for-5 day at the plate and four RBIs. Hacker, Yoder and Nuttycombe added two hits each.
The Eagles, now 9-1 on the season, head to Florida for a six-game spring break trip. Bridgewater plays Mount Union on Sunday in a doubleheader.