VMI Baseball splits doubleheader at Wofford

vmi baseballThe VMI baseball team split a non-conference doubleheader Saturday at Wofford College, dropping the first game 15-4 but rallying to take game two 5-4. The second game Saturday was originally scheduled for Sunday, but was moved up to avoid impending adverse weather, including thunderstorms.

Game 1: Wofford 15, VMI 4

Red-shirt sophomore Josh Hollifield went 3-4 with a double and a triple to pace the VMI offense, but Wofford prevailed 15-4. Nathan Loyd and Jon Clines hit pinch-hit home runs and Jake Huggins and Noah Cook doubled.

Brett Rodriguez, Lawson Hill and Hudson Byorick each had three hits and three RBI for Wofford. Hayes Heinecke went seven innings for the win, striking out eight while allowing eight hits and two runs.

Game 2: VMI 5, Wofford 4

Junior Zak Kent tossed a complete game to earn the victory for the Keydets in a 5-4 win. He allowed just five hits and no walks while striking out 11 batters. He moves into fourth-place in VMI baseball history with 218 career strikeouts, passing three in just one game: Michael Bowman, (209, 2006-08), Chris Henderson, (212, 2006-09) and Phil Hendrix, (216, 2000-03). Kent is in fifth-place already for strikeouts in a season with 92.

Wofford took a 2-0 lead in the second inning of the nightcap. Jake Huggins doubled in the third to bring home Ryan Smoot and Callen Nuccio and tie the game. Cody Warner led off the fourth with a single, and Ryan Hatten followed with another single. Clines doubled to score Warner, and back-to-back bunts plated Hatten and Clines to put VMI ahead 5-2. Wofford cut the lead to 5-4 in the sixth on a wild pitch and a groundout.

Following the Terriers’ two runs in the sixth, Kent took over. He had three-straight 1-2-3 innings to close out the game and seal the win.

VMI outhit Wofford 10-5 in game two, and three Keydets had two hits: Hatten, Clines and Smoot.

Clines, a left-handed pitcher, earned his first start in the lineup of the season as the designated hitter. Nuccio, Huggins, Loyd, Clines and Smoot all doubled.

Brett Rodriguez was the sole Wofford (23-15/6-3 SoCon) batter to have two hits.

VMI (9-27/5-7 SoCon) hosts Richmond University Tuesday at 6 p.m. in non-conference play.

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