Generals earn doubleheader split after comeback win in game two

Danny Devereux

LEXINGTON, Va. – A fifth-inning game two comeback and a stellar relief outing from senior closer Danny Devereux (Mount Prospect, Ill./Prospect) helped the Washington and Lee baseball team salvage a doubleheader split against Virginia Wesleyan on Saturday, as the Generals claimed game two, 7-5, after dropping the first game, 9-3.

Trailing by a score of 5-3 in the bottom of the fifth inning of game two, the Generals (12-15, 6-10 ODAC) put together a rally that saw the first run of the frame come in on a double to left-center field from senior first baseman Zach Loewenberg (Baltimore, Md./Friends School of Baltimore). Two batters later, sophomore catcher Jack Giardino (Charlotte, N.C./Providence Day School) reached on an error, allowing Loewenberg to score and tie the game.

The inning continued and the Generals tacked on an additional two runs in the inning, courtesy of back-to-back bases loaded walks from senior left fielder Matthew Jones (Henrico, Va./Mills E. Godwin) and sophomore third baseman Jason Volpicelli (Great Falls, Va./Paul VI Catholic).

Virginia Wesleyan (15-12, 10-6 ODAC) claimed an early advantage in the contest when junior designated hitter Jacob Pilarski scored on a wild pitch in the top of the first. But the Generals responded with a pair of runs in their half of the first on a sacrifice fly to right from Volpicelli and an RBI single to center from junior designated hitter Bryce Burnette (Hurt, Va./Gretna).

Marlins' senior center fielder Daniel Petro knocked in a run on a single in the top of the second, followed by a two-run single through the left side off the bat of senior right fielder Cody Ellis to regain the lead at 4-2. An RBI double to right center from senior catcher Jordan Sprouse extended the Marlins' lead to 5-2 in the third, before W&L added its third run of the game on another RBI knock from Burnette in the bottom of third.

Devereux came on in relief with runners on first and second and no one out in the third inning, but got out of the frame without further damage and went on to finish the game to earn his second win of the season.

The Marlins were first on the scoreboard in game one when sophomore right fielder Reese Reid singled to center field to drive in junior third baseman Austin Obenour in the top of the second inning. They tacked on two more runs in the top of the third on a sacrifice fly from senior shortstop Brady Fallon, followed by a two-out, run-scoring single to center from junior left fielder Zack Clark.

The Generals scratched their first run of the game across home plate in the bottom of the third on an RBI double down the left-field line from Jones. 

An RBI single from Ellis in the top of the fourth, put the Marlins back up by three runs, but back-to-back hits from the Generals in the bottom of the fifth inning closed the deficit to 4-3. Junior right fielder Ryan Monson (Frisco, Texas/Wakeland) doubled to left center to bring in the frame's first run, followed by a run-scoring single off the bat of Burnette.

The Marlins broke the game open with a four-run seventh inning on two hits and a W&L error. The inning was highlighted by an RBI single from Pilarski and a sac fly to left from Obenour.

The final Virginia Wesleyan run came home in the top of the ninth inning on another sac fly, this one off the bat of Clark with one out in the frame.

Devereux's seven innings of work set a new career-high, besting his previous long outing of 5.2 innings. He finished the game allowing no runs on six hits, with just one walk, and struck out seven batters to earn the win. Junior righty Jackson Thigpen (Potomac, Md./St. John's College) got the start and earned a no decision after allowing five runs (four earned) on seven hits while pitching into the third inning with no outs. 

Senior shortstop Chadwick Feeley (Jacksonville, Fla./Episcopal School) tallied three hits on the day, moving closer to becoming the first W&L player ever to reach the 200-hit mark, closing the day with 198 in his career. He finished with two hits in the second game and scored twice, while Jones, Monson and Burnette each tallied three hits between both games as well, combining for three runs, three RBI and three doubles.

Senior right-hander Kevin McHugh (Forest Hill, Md./McDonogh School) (0-3) got the game one start, but took the loss after surrendering five runs on seven hits across six innings of work. He also struck out four batters in the game. Senior reliever Jack Boyce (Armonk, N.Y./Iona Prep) relived McHugh and got the next out, before junior righty Tom Kellogg (San Antonio, Texas/Saint Mary's Hall) finished the game, covering the final 2.2 innings and allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits, with one walk and three strikeouts.

Senior first baseman Jordan McDonough and Petro logged two hits in both games to lead the Virginia Wesleyan offense. McDonough scored twice in game one, while Petro finished both games with a run and an RBI. Ellis went 3-for-3 in game two and drove in three runs on the day to contribute to the Marlins' offensive production.

Pilarski (5-3) started game one on the mound for the Marlins and earned the win after going 7.1 innings and allowing three runs (two earned) on eight hits, with two walks and three strikeouts. Sophomore reliever Doug Avery closed with 1.2 shutout innings, allowing just two hits. 

Junior Andrew Lowe earned a no decision as the Marlins' game two starter, working the first 4.1 innings and allowing five runs (two earned) on six hits. First-year Robert Cook (0-1) took the loss after allowing two unearned runs in a third of an inning. Sophomores Zack Lubick and Adam Brooks combined to finish the game, covering the final 3.1 innings and allowing no runs on two hits, with one walk and three strikeouts.

The Generals will be on the road for the remainder of the regular season, and will next face-off against Bridgewater on Wednesday for a 4:00 pm matchup.