Four-Run Ninth Inning Lifts Washington U. Baseball Past Greenville, 6-5
St. Louis, Mo., February 28, 2012 - The Washington University in St. Louis baseball team took advantage of four walks, a wild pitch and two key hits to score four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning and earn a 6-5 win over Greenville College on Tuesday afternoon at Kelly Field.
Trailing 5-2 heading into the bottom of the ninth, junior Greg Gleicher and freshman Andrew Goldstick both drew walks, and sophomore Kyle Billig was hit by a pitch to bring the winning run to the plate with no outs. After a pitching change by the Panthers, sophomore Dylan Reid hit a two-RBI single and advanced to second base as Billig slid safely into third. On the first pitch of an intentional walk to senior Brandon Rogalski the ball sailed to the backstop and Billig sprinted home to tie the game at 5-5, while Reid moved to third on the play. Rogalski reached on the walk, and an intentional walk of freshman Zack Kessinger loaded the bases for the Bears. The next batter, sophomore Andrew Dwoskin hit the ball to shallow center field to score Reid from third and give Washington U. the 6-5 win.
The Bears got on the board in the bottom of the first inning when Billig led off the inning with a triple to deep left-center field. The throw to the infield got away from Greenville’s cutoff man, and Billig raced home to put Washington U. up 1-0. In the bottom of the third, the Bears added to their lead when Billig reached on a fielder’s choice, then advanced to third on an errant pick-off attempt by the Greenville pitcher. Reid followed with a sacrifice fly to right field to score Billig and give the Bears a 2-0 lead.
Greenville cut the lead to 2-1 with a run on a pair of singles in the top of the fifth. In the following inning, the Panthers took the lead, 4-2, when Ryan Smith hit a three-RBI double to deep left-center field with two outs. Greenville was threatening to add to its lead in the top of the eighth inning when the Panthers’ first three batters reached base. With the bases loaded and no outs, Tyler Pilcher hit a line-drive to Kessinger at first base. Kessinger then stepped on first for the second out and gunned the ball to Reid at third for a triple play. Smith struck again for Greenville in the top of the ninth with a lead-off homerun over the left-center field fence to give the Panthers a 5-2 lead.
Washington U. finished with seven hits, and had 10 batters reach base on walks in the game. Dwoskin finished 3-for-4 with the game-winning RBI, while Reid was 1-for-3 with three RBIs and a run scored. The Bears also played an error-free game in the field. Greenville tallied six hits, but was hurt by the 10 walks issued as well as three errors. Freshman Brian Cizek picked up the win for Washington U., allowing one earned run and striking out one in an inning of relief. Senior Stephen Bonser had a solid outing as the Bears’ starter, recording one strikeout and allowing just one hit in four innings of work.
Washington U. (1-3) returns to action this weekend when the Bears host No. 16 Buena Vista University and No. 13 College of St. Scholastica at Kelly Field. Washington U. will square off against Buena Vista at 3 p.m. on Friday, March 2, to open the four-game weekend.