ASHLAND, Va. – Tufts Baseball collected 13 hits and ended their 10-game spring break road trip with a 7-3 victory at #5 Randolph-Macon on Sunday afternoon at Estes Park.
|Peter DeMaria recorded four hits, drove in two runs and scored two.|
Following the victory, the Jumbos improve to 8-2 on the season and went 8-1 on the road trip. Randolph-Macon falls to 8-4 overall with the loss.
With the game tied at 3-3 in the top of the seventh, Tufts scored three runs off Randolph-Macon senior pitcher Patrick Solomita. Jumbo junior Justin Mills opened the inning with a walk and reached second base off a sacrifice bunt from junior Elias Varinos. Senior Casey Santos-Ocampo slapped a single through the right side of the infield to advance Mills to third base. Sophomore Ryan Daues drove in both runners with a double to left-center to put Tufts up 5-3. Daues then scored on a single from freshman Peter DeMaria to give the Jumbos a 6-3 edge. Tufts would add an unearned run in the ninth.
Randolph-Macon sophomore pitcher James Womack got the start for the Yellow Jackets and retired the first Jumbo batter before Varinos singled to center field for the first hit of the game. Varinos stole second base to get into scoring position, but Womack would retire DeMaria to get out of the top of the first. Jumbo senior pitcher R.J. Hall got the nod on the mound and Yellow Jacket senior Jeff Butler was the lone batter to reach base in the first inning after being hit by a pitch.
The Jumbos got on the board first in the second inning after Mills tripled to right field to drive in junior JP Knight (single) and senior Will Shackelford (walk). Womack got a ground ball out leaving Mills on third base. Randolph-Macon sophomore Jacob Selden tried to cut into the lead with a one-out double in the bottom of the second, but Hall sat down the other three batters. In the third, DeMaria doubled with two outs to no avail for Tufts and Hall retired the Yellow Jackets in order.
Junior Reece Yeargain got Randolph-Macon on the board with a home run to left field off new Jumbo pitcher freshman Lucas Gustavson to cut the deficit to 2-1 in the fourth. The Yellow Jackets also had Selden and junior Cole Grinde reach base, but Gustavson set down junior Zach Evans to stop the threat. The Jumbos had an opportunity in the top half of the inning as sophomore Brandon Bay got to third base, but was thrown out at home trying to score on a fielder's choice from Shackelford.
However, DeMaria extended the Jumbo lead to 3-1 in the top of the fifth with a home run to left field off sophomore reliever John Reynolds Jr.
The Yellow Jackets retired the Jumbos in a row in the top of the sixth and were able to score two runs on sophomore Jamie Weiss to tie the game at 3-3. Selden doubled down the left field line to drive in Yeargain (HBP) junior Shawn Nickles (single). Selden reached third base before Tufts freshman pitcher Steven Landry entered the game and retired senior Matthew Blaise to end the inning.
After the Jumbos scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning to go up 6-3, Landry walked two batters in the bottom half of the inning. However, he forced Butler into a double play and got a Yeargain fly out to held the lead.
Jumbo junior Spencer Langdon entered the game for Landry in the bottom of the eighth and retired the side in order. DeMaria reached base in the top of the ninth for Tufts with a hit to left field and eventually scored on an error to give the Jumbos a 7-3 edge. Tufts freshman Michael Volgende entered the game in the ninth inning and didn't allow a hit to close out the win.
The Jumbos' offense, along with the 13 hits, drew two walks and left 11 men on base. DeMaria ended the game 4 for 5 with two rbis and two runs scored. Mills and Daues each scored a run, drove in two runs, and drew a walk respectively. Varinos also recorded two hits for the brown and blue. Knight, Shackelford, and Santos-Ocampo each scored runs. Landry recorded his first career win on the mound after his 1.1 scoreless innings pitched.
Selden led the Yellow Jacket offense with three of the team's five hits. Yeargain scored two runs in the game and hit Randolph-Macon's lone home run. Nickles accounted for the other Yellow Jacket hit and scored the other run. Randolph-Macon left seven runners on base and drew four walks as well. Solomita was tagged with the loss after allowing three runs in the seventh inning.
Tufts' next game will be at home against Massachusetts Maritime at 3 pm on Wednesday. Randolph-Macon will return to the diamond on Tuesday when they travel to St. Mary's (Md.) with a 3:30 pm start time.
Written By Athletic Communications Intern Bryan Costello