HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, Va. -- Andrew Tucker came through in a clutch situation for Hampden-Sydney College in Saturday first game against Virginia Wesleyan College, driving in the winning-run in an 11-inning battle. (Box 1) (Box 2)
Tucker (Fincastle, Va./James River) connected for a bases-loaded single to drive in the winning run in a 7-6, 11 inning Old Dominion Athletic Conference win over the visiting Marlins. His hit scored Herbie Williams (Danville, Va./George Washington), who led off with single, moved to second when Chris Martin (Chesterfield, Va./Manchester) drew a walk, and took third on a sacrifice hit by Alan Brownell (Herndon, Va./Herndon).
H-SC (10-4) rode the momentum of the win to a decisive 17-2 victory over VWC (4-5) in the second game of the twinbill. The Tigers connected for 19 hits in the nightcap, while the Marlins recorded just six hits.
Virginia Wesleyan led throughout most of the first game, jumping in front with a three-run second inning sparked by a run-scoring double from Myles Shipp (Virginia Beach/First Colonial) and a two-run double off the bat of Josh Miller (Norfolk, Va./Chesapeake Greenbrier Christian).
The Marlins pushed in front 6-1 in the top of the eighth with another three-run spurt, this one fueled by singles from Mitch Green (Cordova, Md./St. Michael's), Ryan Estrella (Bridgeport, Conn./Trumbull), Steve Jones (Virginia Beach/Lake Taylor)and Shipp.
But, H-SC tied the game in the bottom of the inning with a five-run rally that included five hits and two VWC errors. Justin Hebert (Richmond, Va./Heritage) and Jordan Wind (Tappahannock, Va./Essex) both doubled in the inning for the Tigers.
Virginia Wesleyan threatened in the top of the ninth when Jacob Pierce (Chesapeake, Va./Western Branch) led off with a single and moved to second on a wild pitch. A Shayne Paskanik (Fredericksburg, Va./Colonial Forge) grounder moved Pierce to third, but a strike out and pop up ended the chance to score.
H-SC answered with a threat in the bottom of the 10th with two runners on base, but could not produce the go-ahead run. After VWC fell 1-2-3 in the top of the 11th, the Tigers found the offense they needed to pull out the win in the bottom of the inning.
Game two was all H-SC as the Tigers took control with a five-run second inning. VWC came back to close within a 5-2 score in the top of the sixth, but H-SC tacked on another five-run inning in the sixth and put the game away with a six-run surge in the bottom of the eighth.
Eight VWC pitchers faced H-SC in the second game, beginning with Cameron Butler (Virginia Beach/Landstown), who took the loss. Mike Blanchard (Roanoke, Va./Catholic) posted the win for H-SC, working through eight innings.
VWC's six-hit attack in the second game was highlighted by a Paskanik home run, a solo shot in the fourth. Shipp led the Marlins' 13-hit offense in the first game with a 4-for-6 showing, including a double. Miller also had a double for VWC, while Green and Estrella knocked out two hits each.
Zach Harrelson (Danville, Va./George Washington) topped H-SC hitting in the opener with a double and two singles. Hunter Lewis (Newport News, Va./Menchville), Beau Flinchum (Mechanicsville, Va./Hanover) and Tucker had three hits each for the Tigers in the second game.
Alex DeJesus (Norfolk, Va./Lake Taylor) pitched 7.1 innings for VWC in the first game, striking out three, allowing four walks, five hits and four earned runs. Reid Hoffler (Chesapeake, Va./Suffolk Nansemond River), the fourth pitcher for VWC, took the loss. H-SC also used four pitchers, with Luke Rabiej (Alexandria, Va./Bishop Ireton) earning the win.
The Marlins will attempt to snap a three-game losing slide on Sunday, Feb. 27 when they host the Knights of Neumann University in a non-conference doubleheader at Marlins Field beginning at 11 a.m.