West Liberty Bats Booming in Twinbill Sweep
WEST LIBERTY, W.Va. – The West Liberty University baseball team had the hot bats going here Sunday afternoon with a Mountain East Conference North Division sweep of Frostburg State at Kovalick Field.
Coach Eric Burkle's Hilltoppers (15-14, 13-9) rallied for an 8-6 win in the first game before hammering the Bobcats (8-19, 6-13) by a 17-2 count in the finale.
In the opener, Brian Campbell crushed a two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth to complete a four-run rally and give the Hilltoppers a come-from-behind win.
West Liberty had trailed 6-2 in the bottom of the fifth when Campbell ignited the comeback with a two-out solo blast. Pinch-hitter Connor Fergurson added an RBI single later in the frame to cut the lead to 6-4.
Colton Coss's RBI double – his third hit of the game – jump-started the game-winning rally in the bottom of the sixth. Coss moved up on Chad Matthus's sacrifice bunt and scored the tying run when Ty Helmke ripped a single under the second baseman's glove.
It didn't stay tied for long as Campbell jumped on the first pitch he saw and launched it deep over the fence in right centerfield. Sam Aulick, who had come on in relief to start the sixth inning, worked a scoreless seventh to get the win.
Coss had two singles to go along with his RBI double while Alex Salvatori also had a pair of singles as part of an 11-hit attack.
The Hilltoppers wasted no time putting the second game out of reach, jumping out to a 6-0 lead after the first two innings and never taking their foot off the gas.
Campbell had a huge game, driving in six runs with two double and two singles, while Matthus picked up four RBIs on a 3-run home run and a sacrifice fly. Kaden Blomquist drove in three runs on a single and double while Salvatori added a 2-run single and Coss contributed a run-scoring base knock.
Ian Brady went the distance for the win, holding the visitors to two runs on six hits while striking out five and walking one.
The teams will return to Kovalick Field on Monday for another 1 p.m. doubleheader.
West Liberty 8, Frostburg State 6
Frostburg State 040 110 0 – 6 9 3
West Liberty 200 024 x – 8 11 4
FSU: Velasquez (5SO, 1W), Botsaris (5) (1SO, 0W), Vermillion lp (6) (1SO, 1W) and Jimenez. Jackson D, 2S, 3rbi; Roell D, S, 2rbi; Lawrence S, rbi; Jimenez S, rbi
WLU: Pennybacker (4SO, 2W), Aulick wp (6) (2SO, 0W) and Rine. Coss D, 2S, rbi; Campbell 2HR, 3rbi; Salvatori 2S; Helmke S, rbi; Fergurson S, rbi
West Liberty 17, Frostburg State 2
Frostburg State 000 001 1 – 2 6 1
West Liberty 330 434 x – 17 11 1
FSU: Colliflower lp (1SO, 4W), Clegg (2) (0SO, 2W), Stefanowicz (2) (2SO, 0W), Akehurst (4) (0SO, 2W), Adams (5) (1SO, 3W), Brown (6) (0SO, 0W) and Jimenez, McLaughlin (4). Roell D, S; Allison HR, rbi
WLU: Brady wp (5SO, 1W) and Rine. Campbell 2D, 2S, 6rbi; Blomquist D, S, 3rbi; Matthus HR, 4rbi; Salvatori S, 2rbi; Coss S, rbi; Rine D