Tigers Fall 5-3 in Heartbreaker
LYNCHBURG, VA-The Lynchburg Hornets handed Hampden-Sydney its second in final loss of the ODAC Tournament with a 5-3 decision to end the Tigers' season at 20-21 overall and 9-9 in ODAC play. The Hornets will advance to play top-seeded Bridgewater. The winner of that game will face fourth seeded Randolph-Macon in the championship game.
In the eighth game of the tournament and third for both teams, the Tigers got off to the early lead as senior Justin Hebert (Richmond, VA/Hermitage) belted a solo homerun to left field in the top of the first inning.
Lynchburg responded, however, with three runs on four hits in the bottom of the inning.
After surrendering three runs, senior starter Michael Blanchard (Roanoke, VA/Roanoke Catholic) was nearly untouchable, allowing no runs and just four hits in the next six innings. Hampden-Sydney, meanwhile tacked on its second run in the top of the third. Junior Jordan Wind (Tappahannock, VA/Essex) led off the inning with a double, and then as Herbie Williams (Danville, VA/George Washington) reached on an error, Wind was able to round the bases and make it a 3-2 game.
Hits were hard to come by for Hampden-Sydney as Lynchburg's Jordan Watkins was solid on the mound. In the eighth, however, Williams hit a lead off double, and then advanced to third on a wild pitch. Watkins did not fret though as he got out of the inning while stranding Williams on third.
The Hornets then capitalized in the bottom of the frame, scoring two runs on a Mike Walters RBI single.
With just three outs remaining, Hampden-Sydney put forth a great effort in the ninth. Erick Herrmann (Glen Allen, VA/Deep Run) led off with a single. As Ryan Carter (Chester, VA/Thomas Dale) pinch ran, he advanced to second on a wild pitch. After one out was recorded, Patrick Kuhns (Stafford, VA/North Stafford) advanced Carter to third with a single. Drew Walker (Midlothian, VA/Blessed Sacrament-Huguenot) pinch ran for Kuhns and was advanced to second as Carter scored on a Hunter Lewis (Newport News, VA/Menchville) RBI single. Down 5-3 now with one out, Wind loaded the bases on a single.
It was as close as Hampden-Sydney would come, however, as the league leader in saves, Jared Millner came in and closed out the game, leaving the bases loaded.
Lewis had yet another solid day going 3-for-4 with an RBI. Wind finished the day 2-for-4 with one run. Zach Harrelson (Danville, VA/George Washington) also recorded a hit to finish his career with a program record 170.