Three Homeruns in Seventh Spark Tiger Comeback
HAMPDEN-SYDNEY, VA-In a back and forth game with Rutgers-Newark, Hampden-Sydney hit three homeruns in the seventh inning, including back-to-back bombs from James Keller (Fredericksburg, VA/VMI) and Beau Flinchum (Ashland, VA/Hanover), to take a lead it would not give up while taking a 10-7 victory. The win is the Tigers' fifth straight victory. The team now stands a 7-6-1 while Rutgers-Newark drops to 2-4.
Sophomore ace Zach Whitaker (Roanoke, VA/Patrick Henry) retired the first three batters and set up the momentum for the Tiger offense to knock in two runs in the bottom half of the inning. Junior Andrew Tucker (Fincastle, VA/James River) continued his hot streak with a two-RBI single, scoring Jeff Gray (Newport News, VA/Menchville) and Hunter Lewis (Newport News, VA/Menchville).
Gray scored again in the third as an error got him home, and then Flinchum grounded out but batted in Tucker to put the Tigers up 4-0.
The Scarlet Raiders cut into the lead with three runs on four hits in the fifth, and then they used two runs in the sixth to take their first lead at 5-4. They then added to that lead with two more in the seventh to go up 7-4.
Hampden-Sydney then exploded with three homeruns en route to five runs in the bottom of the frame. Keller was the first to homer with Tucker on base, and then Flinchum took the very next pitch yard. A double from Patrick Kuhns (Stafford, VA/North Stafford) set up a two-run homerun from Christian Hamlett (Midlothian, VA/Cosby) to give the lead back to the Tigers at 9-7.
The Tigers added an insurance run in the eighth as Gray scored on a Keller RBI-single.
On the day, Gray, Keller, Flinchum, and Kuhns all had two hits while the team recorded 11.
Senior Dan Nicoll (Centreville, VA/Bishop Ireton) picked up the win. He allowed two runs on one hit in one inning. Whitaker lasted five innings and gave up three runs on six hits. He struck out three and walked two. Luke Rabiej (Alexandria, VA/Bishop Ireton) recorded his third save, shutting the Raiders out in the ninth.
Hampden-Sydney will wrap up the Floyd B. Wilcox Memorial Tournament tomorrow at 3:00 pm. The Tigers will face Frostburg State at 3:00 pm, and Rutgers-Newark will face Franklin & Marshall at 11:00 am.