MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The West Virginia baseball team earned a 4-1 win over Marshall on Tuesday night at Monongalia County Ballpark.
The Mountaineers used a three-run second inning and allowed just two hits all evening to help take down the in-state foe for the second time in less than a month. WVU finished with four runs on 10 hits with no errors, while the Thundering Herd tallied one run on two hits with one error.
Freshman right-handed pitcher Carlson Reed got the win on the mound, his third of the year, while junior right-hander Madison Jeffrey nailed down his third save of the season in the ninth inning. Marshall’s Raymond Pacella took the loss.
After Reed retired six of the first seven Marshall hitters he saw, the Mountaineers (18-23) gave him a lead with a three-run second, which saw West Virginia collect four total hits in the frame. First, freshman infielder Nathan Blasick put the hosts on the board with an RBI single to left, before redshirt sophomore outfielder Alec Burns scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of sophomore outfielder Victor Scott.
Then, junior outfielder Austin Davis made it 3-0 with a single up the middle, scoring freshman infielder Mikey Kluska. The Orlando, Fla., native finished 3-for-4 with an RBI in the win.
“He’s doing exactly what we talked about — not worrying about homers and just trying to get on base and do his thing,” WVU coach Randy Mazey said of Davis.
After Marshall (8-33) scored a run in the top of the third, senior catcher Paul McIntosh launched a solo home run in the home half of the inning to make it 4-1. The big fly was McIntosh’s team-leading seventh of the season and third in his last five games.
From there, WVU used a total of nine relief pitchers to carry it the rest of the way. The Mountaineers didn’t yield a single hit after the fourth inning and combined to strike out 14 batters.
“We’re trying to see how many of these guys are going to be usable going forward,” Mazey said. “When you get into that conference tournament, we’ll have to win five or six games to win it. So, to win that many in a short period of time, you’re going to have to use 10 or 12 guys. We’re just trying to figure out who is going to be usable in a big situation.”
In the eighth, freshman right-handed pitcher Ben Abernathy was able to get the Mountaineers out of a two-on, one-out jam unharmed after a pair of strikeouts ended the Herd threat. Then, Jeffrey retired Marshall in order in the ninth to earn the save.
Along with Davis, three other Mountaineers — McIntosh, Burns and Blasick — finished with multi-hit efforts in the win. The victory marked WVU’s 11th in its last 13 meetings with Marshall and helped the club take the season series over the Herd, 2-1. Overall, the club improved to 50-25 against the in-state foe, including 33-8 in Morgantown.
Additionally, West Virginia extended its midweek, home win streak to 19 games, dating back to April 3, 2017.
Next up, the Mountaineers close their 2021 home slate with a three-game, weekend series against Miami (Ohio) from Friday-Sunday at Monongalia County Ballpark. First pitch of Friday night’s series opener is set for 6:30 p.m.