MCGEE GEM BUOYS BASEBALL TO 3-1 WIN OVER VCU
RICHMOND, Va. - Junior left-handed pitcher Andrew McGee (Toms River, N.J./Toms River South) hurled his second complete-game victory in the last three games as the Monmouth University baseball team defeated Virginia Commonwealth, 3-1, Friday night at The Diamond. With the win, the Hawks improve to 4-7, while the Rams fall to 10-4.
McGee stifled the Rams' offense, limiting them to just one earned run on six hits and a walk while punching out five over the full nine innings. He didn't allow a runner past second base after the fourth inning. Joe Bamford (Washington, N.J./Warren Hills Regional [Northampton CC]) and Jake Gronsky (Danville, Pa./Danville Area) led the Hawks offensive with three hits each, while Craig Sweeney (Middletown, N.J./Middletown South) and Owen Stewart (Howell, N.J./St. Rose) had two hits each. Bamford scored a run and drove in one, while Sweeney scored two runs. Stewart and Robbie Alessandrine (Sewell, N.J./Gloucester Catholic) added one RBI each. Alessandrine's run batted in came on a squeeze bunt, scoring what proved to be the winning run.
Heath Dwyer took the loss for VCU, allowing three earned runs on 10 hits and three walks in 7.1 innings pitched. Dwyer struck out five. Joey Cujas and Taylor Buran led the Rams with two hits each with Buran's fourth-inning single driving in the lone VCU run.
The Hawks scored first with a two-out third-inning rally. Sweeney got things started by driving a double to left. After a Jon Guida (Martinsville, N.J./Bridgewater Raritan) walk, Bamford singled to left to score Sweeney and give the Hawks a 1-0 lead. The Rams responded with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Chris Ayers ripped a one-out single and moved to second with two outs on a wild pitch. Buran then singled to left to push Ayers across and tie the game at 1-1.
In the sixth, Bamford got things started with a one-out single to center. Stewart's single to right put runners on the corners before Alessandrine executed a squeeze bunt to score Bamford with what would prove to be the winning run. The Hawks added an insurance run in the eighth. Sweeney led off with an infield single and moved to second on Guida's sacrifice bunt. After Matt Lees replaced Dwyer on the mound, Bamford grounded out to push Sweeney over to third. Stewart then delivered a two-out single to center to score Sweeney and give the Hawks a 3-1 lead. McGee slammed the door shut, not allowing a runner past second base over the final five innings.
The Hawks continue their three-game set at VCU on Saturday afternoon. First pitch from The Diamond is scheduled for 3 p.m.