EMU Splits Offensive DH With Guilford

Joe Hall pulled this pitch into the gap in left center to give EMU a 7-2 lead in the opener. (photo by Scott Eyre)
Joe Hall pulled this pitch into the gap in left center to give EMU a 7-2 lead in the opener. (photo by Scott Eyre)

The Royals won game one of an ODAC doubleheader with Guilford on Saturday, drawing a split against the Quakers. EMU moves to 12-15 on the season, including 3-9 in the ODAC.

Eastern Mennonite enters a busy week, playing at Ferrum on Monday before hosting Southern Virginia and Hood on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively. The game against Hood was rescheduled from last week Sunday. The Royals are also home next Saturday, hosting Randolph-Macon on Senior Recognition Day.

EMU 9, Guilford 5
After two scoreless innings, the opener broke open in the third. Guilford struck first with a two-out run in the top of the frame, but David Meehan (Virginia Beach, Va./Salem) got the Royals going with a leadoff double in the bottom half. Despite only two balls out of the infield, EMU's first six batters reached safely as four men touched home for a 4-1 lead.

The Quakers got another two-out run in the fourth, so the men joined the fun in their half, getting a two-run triple from Griffin Stanley (Roanoke, Va./Cave Spring) followed by a run-scoring triple from Joe Hall (Gladys, Va./Rustburg) for the 7-2 margin.

Guilford got to within 7-5 in the middle of the eight, but the men had an answer, using two-out RBI singles from Stanley and Hall to push the lead back up to four runs.

The offense was not traditional, but they certainly made it work, as the bottom three batters in the order scored seven of the team's runs, while the top two batters had six RBIs.

Stanley finished 3-5 with three RBIs and two runs. Hall batted 4-5 with three RBIs. Kyle Salladay (Chesapeake, Va./Grassfield) had three singles and scored three runs. Meehan was 2-4 with two runs.

Pitchers Damon Frazier (Waynesboro, Va./Wilson Memorial) and Ryan Brewer (Martinsville, Va./Franklin County) combined to give up 19 hits to the Quakers, but also worked to minimize the damage and strand 15 runners on base. Frazier improved to 4-3 with the win, giving up three runs in 7.0 innings.

Guilford 15, EMU 4
The Royals scored first in the nightcap, and were still within reach until the bullpen struggled against the offensive-minded Quakers.

Frazier brought in Hall with a two-out RBI single for a 1-0 lead in the third. Guilford answered with back-to-back scoring frames to lead 4-1 after five.

EMU took advantage of a GC error and a strange play to tie the game in the sixth. With runners on the corners and one away, Hall put a fly ball into foul territory down the right field line. The Quakers' outfielder caught the ball before dropping it as he transferred it to his throwing hand. In the meantime, Salladay trotted home on the sacrifice fly, despite Guilford's pleas that he left third base before the catch in the outfield.

When the dust settled and the run was allowed, the Royals kept rolling. Frazier slapped an RBI single, and after a pitching change, the tying run scored on a passed ball. All three of the runs were unearned.

The Quakers regrouped with a two-out, two-run double in the seventh, going back in front, 6-4. Then the eighth inning happened, where GC batted 12 men and dented home seven times. Two more scored in the ninth as the visitors tallied the final 11 of the game.

Frazier finished 4-5 at the plate, picking up two RBIs. Zach Roberts (Stuarts Draft, Va./Riverheads) was 2-4 with a walk, while Hall and Kyle Mathews (Chesapeake, Va./Great Bridge) each had a pair of singles.

Jake Brown (Gloucester, Va./Gloucester) gave up six runs in 6.1 innings, falling to 1-2. Six relievers combined to allow nine runs on 12 hits in 2.3 frames.

Coach Ben Spotts said his men got timely hits in the first game: