Marlins Hold On for 11-10 Victory over No. 24 Salisbury
SALISBURY, Md.- After falling to No. 24 Salisbury University on Sunday at home, the Virginia Wesleyan College baseball team came out looking for redemption on Tuesday, bringing home the first win on the season, 11-10.
The Marlins took a large lead in the first inning as Justin Erby led off the inning with a single before making it all the way to third on a pair of wild pitches. He scored on an RBI groundout by Brandon Kussmaul for a 1-0 lead. Taylor Erby singled through the right side, followed by Randy Neisz with a double to center that advanced Taylor Erby to third. Deon Hammond chased Taylor Erby home on a groundout to shortstop.
Back-to-back walks to C.J. Lindsay and Zack Clark loaded the bases. Jack Cheney continued to struggle with control, walking a third-straight hitter as his walk of Jordan Sprouse gave the Marlins a 3-0 margin. Jordy Ellis capped off the inning with a bases-clearing triple to center that made the score 6-0.
The Marlins scored two more runs in the second to go up 8-0, tacking on single runs in the fifth and the sixth innings to fend off Salisbury for a 10-8 lead heading into the seventh. Jack Decker connected on a three-run homer for Salisbury to spur on the Sea Gulls.
The Marlins could not scrape together a run in the top of the seventh inning. The Sea Gulls were able to finish off the rally, scoring a two-run homer to right field by Colby Dean to knot the score at 10-all.
Kussmaul lead off the top of the eighth with a walk, and advanced to second after a one-out single to right field by Neisz. Kussmaul and Neisz pulled off a successful double steal to put the pair in scoring position. Hammond followed with a walk to load the bases for Lindsay. Control proved to be an issue again as Lindsay drew the free pass to score the game-winning run.
Connor Reeves was solid in relief for No. 24 Salisbury, allowing four runs (one earned) in five innings while striking three.
Brendan Wheeler (1-0) earned the win for the Marlins with 1.2 innings of work while Riley Koonce picked up his first save of the campaign. Taylor Erby went 3-for-6 with a solo home run and two runs scored.
Virginia Wesleyan (1-3) will host Brockport State (0-0) next Friday, February 24 for a noon doubleheader. It will be part of a weekend three-team tournament with the Marlins, Brockport St., and Ithaca.