#23 West Virginia Mountaineers used a four-run, ninth inning rally to beat the Bryant Bulldogs 9-7 in Sunday’s game of the Coastal Carolina Baseball Tournament in Myrtle Beach. The Mountaineers continue to put themselves in bad position with bad fielding, committing 6 errors today, leading to two more unearned runs.
Starting pitcher Jake Carr was wild today, lasting only 4.2 IP while issuing 2 walks, a hit batter and a wild pitch. Homeruns continued to be the story of the weekend as Bryant hit three against Carr. Carr has now given up 6 homeruns in only 10 innings of work.
Carr put the Mountaineers in an early hole when he allowed a two-run homerun in the bottom of the first inning. West Virginia would get one run back in the top of the second when thirdbasemen Kevin Brophy homered leading off the inning. A throwing error by shortstop Mikey Kluska would allow a run in the bottom of the 2nd.
In the third inning, the Mountaineers avoided giving up another run when centerfielder Victor Scott made a poor throw after catching a fly ball. The runner advanced to second and third on the row but got greedy and was thrown out at home by first basemen Matt McCormick.
The game looked like Bryant was about to run away with it when Carr allowed back to back homeruns in the bottom of the fifth to make it 5-1.
In the top of the sixth inning, the Mountaineers bats started to come alive. Centerfielder Victor Scott and catcher Vince Ippoliti knocked back-to-back homeruns to cut the lead to 5-3. In the bottom of the inning, another throwing error would allow another unearned run as Bryant pushed the lead to 6-3.
In the eighth inning, West Virginia once again use the long ball to cut into the Bryant lead as Kevin Brophy and Mikey Kluska started the inning off with back-to-back homeruns, making it a 6-5 game. West Virginia would continue to threaten in the inning but couldn’t push any more runs across the plate. In the bottom of the inning, a wild pitch by Jacob Watters would allow another unearned run and Bryant looked like they might have sealed the deal, making it 7-5.
In the top of the ninth inning, the Mountaineers started the inning with a Victor Scott double, who advanced to third on a balk. Dominic Ragazzo struck out and Kevin Brophy used a sac fly to bring Scott home, cutting the lead to 7-6. The things got interesting. Mikey Kluska walked. Tyler Doanes pinch ran for him. A fielding error allowed Braden Barry to reach and it would be a costly error as that brought up Nathan Blasick. Blasick blasted a three-run homer to right center to finally put the Mountaineers on top. West Virginia continued to threaten and had guys on 2nd and 3rd before a stikeout ended the inning.
Head coach Randy Mazey would turn to Skylar Gonzalez who would nail down the ninth for his first save of the season.
On the season Dominic Ragazzo and Matt McCormick lead the team offensively. Ragazzo is hitting .412/.444/.588/1.032 while McCormick is slashing .273/.385/.773/1.158. McCormick’s three homeruns leads the team as do his 5 RBIs, 6 Runs and 2 doubles.