VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Senior center fielder Keegan Dolan (Bethesda, Md./Landon) set the W&L single-season home run record to lead the Washington and Lee baseball team to a doubleheader split at Virginia Wesleyan on Sunday.
The Marlins (14-22, 8-12 ODAC) came from behind to take the first game, 3-2, in 12 innings, but Dolan went 3-for-5 with two home runs in the second contest to lead the Generals (18-11, 11-9) to a 9-5 victory.
VWC led game two, 3-2, through five innings, but W&L took the lead in the top of the sixth. After the first two runners reached, Dolan launched a three-run homer to left to give the Blue and White a 5-3 advantage. The Generals would push the advantage to 6-3 later in the inning when sophomore shortstop Taylor Rowe (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park) scored on an error.
The Marlins closed the gap to one, 6-5, in the bottom of the frame, as first-year third baseman Ty Boothe came home on an error, and junior first baseman Casey King recorded a RBI groundout.
Dolan responded in the top of the seventh by clearing the fences for the second-straight inning. Following a single by junior second baseman Nick Biumi (Cummings, Ga./Lambert), Dolan homered to left center to stretch the lead to 8-5. W&L would add one more insurance run in the eighth on a one-run single by first-year third baseman Ryan Weston (Rolling Hills Estates, Calif./Palos Verdes Peninsula).
With the two home runs, Dolan now has 10 for the season. The total breaks the W&L single-season record of nine. Christian Batcheller hit nine in 1997 and 1998 and Bryan Mulhern registered nine in 2004. Dolan now has 17 career homers, which marks the fourth-most in program history.
Junior Drew Shott (Bethesda, Md./Georgetown Prep) earned the victory for the Generals to improve to 1-1. He pitched 5.0 innings of relief, surrendering two unearned runs. He scattered six hits and struck out six.
Senior Lee Cranford (0-1) suffered the loss for Virginia Wesleyan. He came out of the bullpen and went 1.2 innings. Cranford gave up six runs (five earned) on five hits and two walks.
W&L trailed 1-0 through seven innings of the opener. The Blue and White took the lead (2-1) when sophomore catcher Andrew Head (Edmond, Okla./Bishop McGuinness) scored on a balk and Rowe had a RBI ground out.
VWC tied the game in the bottom of the ninth inning on a RBI double by King. Neither team would score in the next two innings, but Boothe gave the Marlins a walk-off 3-2 victory on a RBI single in the bottom of the 12th.
Junior Alex Tucci (5-3) registered the win for the Marlins, pitching the final 4.2 innings. He held W&L scoreless, while striking out seven. Junior Cory Smith (Roanoke, Va./Hidden Valley) took the loss for the Generals to fall to 1-1. He gave up two runs on six hits in 4.2 innings. First-year Tom Concklin (Hinsdale, Ill./Hinsdale Central) started the game for the Blue and White. He pitched 7.0 innings and gave up one run on six hits.
For the doubleheader, Dolan went 4-for-11 with two homers, five RBI and three runs scored. Biumi finished 6-for-9 with four runs.
With their 11-9 record in the conference, the Generals qualified for the ODAC Tournament. W&L will be seeded fourth and face third-seeded Bridgewater on Thursday at 6:00 pm at City Stadium in Lynchburg.
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