The Urbana University baseball team split Friday’s home doubleheader against Glenville State following a come-from-behind, walk-off win in the second game. The Blue Knights came out on top 4-3 after falling 2-1 in the opening contest as both teams labored through wet playing conditions at Blue Knight Baseball Field.
The Blue Knights split their fourth straight conference doubleheader and moved to 10-14 overall (4-6 MEC). The Pioneers are now 4-15 overall (3-7 MEC) on the season.
UU was limited to five hits and had only two runners reach third base in a narrow 2-1 defeat. Starter Patrick Orr (0-2) tossed a complete game, but suffered the tough-luck loss on the mound in his second career start. Senior right fielder Nick Gallagher led the way with two hits while Daniel Quiroz, Brent West, and Mickey Barea each had one hit.
Both teams scored once in the second frame and the score remained tied until the Pioneers executed a suicide squeeze play to score the go-ahead run in the sixth.
Barea produced UU’s run on a ground out after Gallagher led off the bottom of the second frame with a single up the middle.
The Pioneers outhit the Blue Knights 8-5, including three doubles, while right-hander Brady Wilkinson (1-1) earned his first win on the hill.
The Blue Knights trailed 3-1 entering their final at-bat and then plated three runs with two outs to stun the Pioneers.
Both teams combined for just seven hits, but UU utilized timely discipline at the plate in the last inning as the GSC relievers struggled to find the zone. After a leadoff walk by Bradley Burkholder, GSC’s Zach Sanford struck out the next two batters and had the Knights on the ropes. However, seniors Damario Brown and Kaleb Foltz drew walks in the next two plate appearances to load the bases.
Then, Gallagher slapped an infield single to the left side that died in the wet grass and allowed each runner to move up a base, making the score 3-2.
After a pitching change, Connor Coy drew a four-pitch walk to tie the game and then the next batter, Mickey Losey, was hit by the first pitch he saw on the day to bring home the game-winning run.
UU starter Adam Guay went the distance and improved to 2-1 on the year. The senior righty struck out five batters with four hits, three earned runs and three walks allowed.
The Pioneers led 2-1 after the second inning and then registered a solo home run in the fifth to gain the 3-1 lead. UU’s Zeth Tanner produced the first run for the Blue Knights on a sacrifice fly to center field.
UU travels to West Virginia Wesleyan for a doubleheader on Sunday, which is set to begin at 1 p.m. in Buckhannon, West Virginia.
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