BRIDGEWATER, Va. - Bridgewater College and Randolph-Macon College split their doubleheader Saturday afternoon. Bridgewater won the opener, 8-0, while the Yellow Jackets held on for a 5-3 win in the second game.
The early season twinbill matched the top two teams in the preseason poll with the Eagles picked No. 1 and the Yellow Jackets No. 2.
In the opener, senior Kevin Chandler pitched a complete-game shutout to lead the No. 25 Eagles to the 8-0 victory. Chandler scattered seven hits while striking out seven and walking just two.
The game was a classic pitcher's duel in the early innings with the Eagles managing just one run off Yellow Jackets lefty Jamie Hendrick.
The Eagles scored in the fourth to take the lead. With one out, Bryan Sanderson doubled down the right-field line and moved to third on a wild pitch. Sanderson scored on Andrew Hacker's groundout to second, putting the Eagles on top 1-0.
The Eagles added some insurance with two runs in the sixth and once again Sanderson was in the middle of the action. Alex Nuttycombe walked with one out and Sanderson belted a homer over the left-field fence to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead.
Bridgewater broke the game open with five runs in the bottom of the eighth. Darren Yoder walked to lead off the inning and Devon Snow followed with a bunt single. After both runners moved up on a sacrifice bunt, Sanderson hit a grounder to second and Yoder beat the throw home for a 4-0 BC lead.
A walk and infield error loaded the sacks and Jay Thompson singled up the middle to drive home two runs, making the score 6-0. Zach Hynes walked to reload the bases and Nick Fulk came through with a single through the left side of the infield to put the Eagles on tip 8-0.
The Eagles struck first in the second game with two runs in the first off R-MC starter Michael Helbig.
Devon Snow doubled to lead off the game, moved to third on a groundout and scored on a passed ball for a 1-0 BC lead. Sanderson and Jonathan Mason walked and Sanderson scored on a single up the middle by Hacker, making the score 2-0.
The Yellow Jackets grabbed a 3-2 lead in the fourth against BC starter Joseph Lucas on a Jeb Weymouth solo homer and a two-run shot by Jon Witt.
Randolph-Macon added two runs in the fifth when they bunched four straight hits after two outs. Jake Fletcher started the rally with a bunt single and singles by Weymouth and Jordan Walton loaded the sacks. Witt then doubled to left to chase home two runs, giving the visitors a 5-2 lead.
The Eagles nicked Helbig for another run in the bottom of the fifth. Singles by Nuttycombe and Mason set the table for Hacker and the BC first baseman singled up the middle, scoring Nuttycombe from second to make it 5-3. A wild pitch put two runners in scoring position, but Thompson grounded out the third to end the inning.
The bullpens then took over and put nothing but zeros on the board the rest of the way.
The Eagles had some chances in the closing innings, but were unable to come up with the clutch hit.
In the seventh, Snow singled off lefty reliever Brandon Beiler and then stole second base. Snow moved to third on a fly out to center, but was stranded 90 feet from the plate when Mason grounded out to first to end the inning.
Hacker led of the eighth with a double off lefty closer Ryan Wood, but Wood retired the next three batters on a fly ball and two strikeouts to preserve the 5-3 lead.
With the split, Bridgewater is now 15-6 overall and 3-1 in the ODAC. Randolph-Macon moves to 8-9-1 overall and 4-2 in the conference.
The Eagles are back in action Tuesday afternoon when they host Washington and Lee in ODAC action.