GRANVILLE, W.Va. - On a perfect night for baseball at Monongalia County Ballpark, the West Virginia Black Bears dominated the Williamsport Crosscutters,11-4, in a shortened seven-inning game on Tuesday evening. With the win, the Bears take their second series of the season and have now won five games in a
GRANVILLE, W.Va. - On a perfect night for baseball at Monongalia County Ballpark, the West Virginia Black Bears dominated the Williamsport Crosscutters,11-4, in a shortened seven-inning game on Tuesday evening. With the win, the Bears take their second series of the season and have now won five games in a row.
The Crosscutters jumped out to an early lead in the top of the first inning. Williamsport had the West Virginia defense in a tough spot down one run with runners on base. SS Sam Antonacci faked a dive and throw on a fly ball hit to center field to confuse the Crosscutters runner and get the force out at second base. Starting pitcher Turner Spoljaric then caught Williamsport looking at the plate to record the third out of the inning before the Crosscutters could score.
Antonacci continued to help the Black Bears on the base paths after he scored on an attempt to steal third after the throw from Williamsport catcher Eddie Neiman ended up in shallow left field. The Black Bears entered the top of the second tied 1-1.
After a dominant three-inning performance on the mound from Spoljaric (3 SO, 0 ER), right-handed pitcher Austin Becker entered in relief in the fourth inning. Becker and the Black Bear defense retired the side before any runs could score, setting up the Black Bears for their biggest inning of the night.
In the bottom of the fourth, a single from Hunter May scored RF Blaze Brothers, giving the Black Bears a 2-1 lead. Ben Greer walked with the bases loaded, scoring 1B Ryan Hernandez. Hunter May crossed the plate on a fielder’s choice to put the Black Bears up 4-1, before Sam Crail hustled around the bases on a ball hit perfectly to left field to get an inside-the-park homerun. Crail’s speedy baserunning brought home two more runs to extend the Bears lead to six heading into the fifth.
The Crosscutters attempted to creep back into the game after scoring in the top of the fifth, but Ryan Hernandez quickly shut down any hopes of a comeback with a two-run homerun to give the Black Bears a comfortable 9-2 lead.
After Williamsport put up two more runs in the top of the sixth, the Black Bears earned two more insurance runs off a Crail ground-rule double that scored 2B Daunte Stuart, and a Ryan McCoy gapper scored Crail to bring the score to 11-4. The game ended quickly in the top of the seventh after two incredible diving stops from Antonacci got Crosscutter runners out at first and home plate for the second and third outs of the inning.
With the win, the Black Bears are now 7-10 on the season. They look to clinch their second sweep of the season tomorrow evening against Williamsport. First pitch is set for 6:35 p.m.