Samford edges VMI, 2-1

vmiJesse McCord and Wyatt Burns combined on a one-hitter to lead the Samford Bulldogs past the VMI Keydets, 2-1, in the middle game of a three-game SoCon series Saturday in Lexington, Va. Samford (17-10, 1-1 SoCon) evened the series at one with its victory.

After VMI’s (13-14, 2-3 SoCon) Mason Adamson singled home a run in the second to give the Keydets the early lead, McCord settled in and VMI did not have a hit for the remainder of the game. The visitors got single runs in the fourth and fifth, and McCord and Burns combined to allow VMI to get just one runner into scoring position all day.

McCord got the win with seven one-hit innings, as he walked three and struck out eight. Burns fanned three in two hitless innings to record his Division I-leading 11th save.

Matt Eagle took the loss to fall to 2-1. He struck out seven, walked one and allowed three hits in five innings. The VMI bullpen limited Samford to one hit over the last four innings of the game, including Derek Tremblay’s ninth consecutive scoreless appearance, but the Keydets could not take advantage.

VMI jumped ahead in the second, when Tyler Tharp walked with one out and one out later, stole second base. Adamson then singled to center to give the Keydets the lead, and Eagle cruised through the first three innings with six strikeouts.

Samford tied the game with a run in the fourth, however, and took the lead for good in the fifth. Jordan Fucci was hit by a pitch and bunted to second. He moved to third on a fly out, and T.J. Dixon followed with a ground ball in the hole between first and second. Collin Fleischer got a glove on it but it caromed away for a base hit, allowing Fucci to score the eventual winning run.

Offensively, T.J. Dixon had the lone two-hit game for either side.

The game was played in a brisk two hours, 34 minutes, and was only the second sub-three hour game for VMI this season that had been started by a pitcher other than Josh Winder.

VMI baseball will return to action Sunday, when the Keydets and Samford wrap up their series with a noon first pitch.

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