First-Inning Home Run Propels W&L Baseball to 5-2 Win

ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. — A three-run home run by first-year third baseman Ryan Weston (Rolling Hills Estates, Calif./Palos Verdes Peninsula) propelled the Washington and Lee baseball team to a 5-2 victory at North Carolina Wesleyan on Tuesday.

Junior shortstop Taylor Rowe (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park) started the Generals' (2-1) rally in the opening inning by drawing a one-out walk. Junior left fielder Drew Weprinsky (Atlanta, Ga./Westminster) followed with a single to move Rowe to second and extended his hitting streak to 31 games.

Following a fly out by senior first baseman Josh Josephson (Boca Raton, Fla./American Heritage), Weston hit a three-run home run to spot W&L a 3-0 advantage. It marked the first homer of the year for the Generals and the first collegiate home run for Weston.

The Battling Bishops (2-4) responded with one run in the bottom of the frame (3-1), but Rowe pushed the Generals' lead back to three, 4-1, on a one-run single to left to plate senior center fielder Keegan Dolan (Bethesda, Md./Landon) in the top of the second.

N.C. Wesleyan scored its final tally of the contest in the third on a sacrifice fly by first-year center fielder Luis Palencia. Junior second baseman Nick Biumi's (Cummings, Ga./Lambert) RBI single in the top of the fifth gave the Blue and White an extra insurance run (5-2), which proved to be the final margin.

The Generals' pitching staff held the Bishops to just seven hits and two earned runs over nine innings. Senior Jake Rudolph (Cordova, Tenn./Memphis University School) started the game and threw 5.0 innings to move to 1-1 on the season. He gave up two runs on three hits, while striking out two.

Junior Cory Smith (Roanoke, Va./Hidden Valley) pitched three innings of relief and allowed only four hits and struck out three. Senior Nate Plein (El Cajon, Calif./St. Augustine) threw a perfect ninth inning, including one strikeout, to earn his first save of the season.

Sophomore Dillon Moore (0-1) took the loss for N.C. Wesleyan, as he allowed four earned runs in 2.0 innings.

Rowe and sophomore right fielder Luke Myer (Durham, N.C./Durham Academy) were the only two W&L players with multiple hits in the contest. The Bishops' right fielder Hayden Williams finished the game 3-for-3 with a run scored.

The Generals play at Averett on Wednesday at 2:00 pm.

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