CHARLESTON, S.C. – The Citadel baseball team clinched its season-opening series and earned head coach Fred Jordan his 800th career win on Saturday afternoon.
The win marks the second time in as many years that the Bulldogs have taken their opening series. With the victory, Coach Jordan is the first coach in Southern Conference history and one of 27 active Division I head coaches with 800 career wins.
The Bulldogs (2-0) defeated Virginia Tech (0-2) in thrilling fashion inside Joe Riley Park as senior Zach Lavery fanned the Hokies’ four and five batters with the bases loaded in the top of the ninth to earn his second save of the season. Jacob Watcher earned the win after striking out two in 1.0 inning of work, and starter Thomas Byelick only allowed one earned run in 6.0 innings of work. The Citadel’s young pitching staff has fared well so far this season, totaling 30 strikeouts in the opening weekend and a 2.50 ERA. Starters JP Sears and Byelick have given up one earned run in a combined 11 innings of work.
Offensively the Bulldogs recorded timely hitting throughout the game. Philip Watcher was 2-for-3 with two RBI and put the ‘Dogs ahead for good in the seventh inning after smoking a one-out double into right-center field. Stephen Windham was 2-for-4 and scored a run.
The Bulldogs will go for the series sweep Sunday at 1 p.m. with freshman Morgan Foulks taking the mound for his first collegiate start. Kit Scheetz will start for the Hokies. Live stats will be available for the game but there will be no live stream due to overlap with senior wrestling day. For tickets, call 843-953-DOGS (3647) or visit CitadelSports.com/tickets.
For more information on The Citadel baseball, follow @CitadelBaseball or visit CitadelSports.com.
Top 2nd – Virginia Tech 1, The Citadel 0: Max Ponzurick scored from 3rd on a groundout to second base by Joe Freiday, Jr. for the second out
Bottom 2nd – The Citadel 1, Virginia Tech 1: Steven Hansen scored from 3rd on a sacrifice fly to center field by William Kinney for the second out
Top 3rd – Virginia Tech 2, The Citadel 1: Saige Jenco scored from 3rd on a passed ball
Bottom 7th – The Citadel 2, Virginia Tech 2: Mike Deese scored from 3rd on a walk by Drew Ellis with no outs
Bottom 7th – The Citadel 4, Virginia Tech 2: Austin Mapes scored from 3rd and Stephen Windham scored from 2nd on a double by Philip Watcher with one out
Bottom 7th – The Citadel 5, Virginia Tech 2: Drew Ellis scored from 3rd on an error by the catcher
Top 8th – The Citadel 5, Virginia Tech 3: Tom Stoffel scored from 3rd on a groundout to shortstop by Phil Sciretta for the first out
Top 8th – The Citadel 5, Virginia Tech 4: Max Ponzurick scored from 2nd on a single by Sam Fragale with one out