The University of Richmond baseball team had a large comeback in the bottom of the third inning to defeat Norfolk State University’s baseball team 22-10 on April 12.
The Norfolk Spartans started off strong offensively against the Spiders in the top of the second inning. A triple to right field left a Spartan on base when a home run was hit to left-center field to drive in two runs for NSU.
First-year Rob Ready, the Spiders’ starting pitcher, played two innings on the mound, giving up two runs. First-year Esteban Rodriguez replaced Ready at the top of the third.
At the top of the third, the Spartans quickly got on base with two singles before a groundout to shortstop. The Spartans got a double with a fielder’s choice, but the Spiders got an out-at-home plate.
Shortly after, NSU knocked a double to right field, helping two runs cross the plate. The Spartans scored another two runs in the inning before Rodriguez retired the side with a strikeout.
The Spiders' offense had an explosive third inning, bringing twelve runs across the plate. The bottom of the inning started off strong when designated hitter junior Jason Neff slammed a homer to center field. First-year DJ Pacheco then hit a single followed by graduate student Christian Beal, who hit a single to left field. Junior Alden Mathes reached first on a fielder’s choice that caught Beal out at second. Mathes quickly stole second on a wild pitch.
Graduate student Dom Toso hit a two-run-batted-in single that sent Pacheco and Mathes home, bringing the score to 6-3 in the Spartans' favor. The Spartans brought in a relief pitcher before senior Johnny Hipsman doubled to advance Toso to third. First-year Jake Elbeery and sophomore Jared Sprague-Lott both hit RBI singles before graduate Shane Gipson walked to load the bases.
The Spiders increased the score to 8-6 in their favor after two batters were walked and two hit by a pitch. Mathes hit a two-RBI double to right field. The inning continued with a single by Toso, bringing home Beal and a walk to Elbeery. The final run of the inning occurred when Elbeery fouled out for Mathes to cross the plate. The inning ended when Sprague-Lott popped up to the second base.
At the bottom of the fourth, UR added another run to the board when Neff walked and advanced to third on a single from Beal. Neff crossed the plate on a wild pitch to close out the inning, raising the score to 13-6.
The Spartans got a run off of Rodriguez in the top of the fifth before graduate Jack Buckley came onto the mound to finish the inning with a double play.
At the bottom of the sixth, the Spiders scored another four runs started by a walk to Sprague-Lott. Neff hit a single before Pacheco was walked to load the bases. Beal singled bringing Neff and Sprague-Lott home, and Mathes flew out to the center field to help Pacheco cross the plate. Beal then scored on a balk by the Spartans’ pitcher, advancing the score to 17-7.
The Spartans scored another run in the top of the seventh. The Spiders responded with three runs in the bottom of the inning.
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The final score came to 22-10 in the Spiders’ favor after a momentous fourth inning.
The Spiders start off a three-game series against Virginia Commonwealth University at 2:30 p.m. on April 15 at the Spiders’ Pitt Field.
Contact sports writer Lucia Helmers at email@example.com.
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