ARLINGTON, Va. – UMBC junior Jake Barnes (Annandale, Va./Annandale) went 4-for-4 at the plate, connecting for two doubles and his first home run of the season and the Retriever baseball team defeated George Washington on the road, 8-2, Tuesday afternoon at Barcroft Park.
UMBC (12-18) has now won six straight games to match the longest win streak in program history in the last 11 seasons. The 2008 Retriever team also won six straight from April 25-May 2.
Barnes helped the Retrievers take advantage of three George Washington (13-24) errors, and smashed his first homer of the season, and second in three games against the Colonials, on the first pitch of the ninth inning. He finished with four hits on the day while driving in four runs and scoring two more.
Junior Shane Vlasic (Ashburn, Va./Broad Run) pitched six strong innings for the Retrievers to earn his third win (3-1) of the year. The veteran right-hander allowed two runs, only one earned, while scattering seven hits. He struck out three batters and did not issue a walk for the second straight outing. Junior Bobby Applegate (Somerdale, N.J./Sterling/Gloucester County College) pitched three scoreless innings to pick up his first career save.
Brandon Ritchie (1-2) took the loss for the Colonials after UMBC tagged the freshman righty for three runs on six hits in 2.1 innings of work.
UMBC got two base hits in the bottom of the first, but lead-off hitter Kevin Lachance (Clifton, Va./Centreville) was erased on a double-play ball and junior Vince Corbi (Medford, N.J./Shawnee) was stranded on base.
George Washington made the Retrievers pay in the bottom half as Joey Bartosic pulled a single through the left side to start the inning and eventually came around to score on an RBI ground out by Bobby Campbell to give the hosts the early 1-0 lead.
In the very next frame, the Retrievers tied it up as freshman Connor Hax (Bowie, Md./Bishop McNamara) lifted a fly ball to center with the bases loaded and Barnes scored from third to knot the game at 1-1. The Retrievers could not get anymore, however, as a strike out ended the inning and stranded runners on second and third.
Vlasic held GW off the board in the bottom half and his offense responded in the top of the third. Freshman Andrew Casali (New Canaan, Conn./New Canaan) drew a four-pitch walk to start the frame and Corbi roped a 3-2 pitch to left for a double to chase Casali around to score for a 2-1 UMBC advantage. Sophomore Mark Esposito (Bethany, Conn./Bethany) then was issued a free pass on five pitches and Barnes cashed in with a double to left to bring around Corbi to push the lead to 3-1.
After Vlasic sent the Colonials down in order in the bottom of the third, UMBC added to its lead with three more runs. Hax drew a lead-off walk and then Lachance reached on an error by the third baseman to put two runners on. Casali then dropped down a sac bunt, but gained first on a miscue by the pitcher. Following a foul out to first, Esposito reached on a fielder's choice with another error by the third baseman allowing Hax and Lachance to score. With runners on second and third, Barnes sent a fly ball to center and Casali tagged and scored to push the Retriever lead to five, 6-1.
GW got a run back in the bottom of the fourth as Cody Bryant led off with a double to right and came around to score on a two-out single by Eli Kashi to pull the hosts within four at 6-2. Vlasic buckled down from there allowing only one hit in the next two frames to finish his outing.
Barnes added to the Retriever lead in the top of the sixth, driving his second double of the game to the left-centerfield gap to score Esposito, who had previously walked, all the way from first.
Applegate entered to relieve Vlasic in the bottom of the seventh recorded a three-up, three-down inning for the Retrievers. In the eighth, the junior right-hander worked around a lead-off single for another scoreless inning, and then kept the Colonials off the board in the ninth, despite allowing two base runners.
In the top of the ninth, Barnes jumped on the first pitch he saw of the at-bat and sent it flying over the left field fence for his third career long ball.
UMBC now returns home to host Coppin State on Wednesday evening. First pitch at Alumni Field between the Retrievers and Eagles is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.
- UMBC has now won each of the last two games between the two clubs at Barcroft Park and has cut GW's lead in the all-time series to 29-16.
- Today's game was originally scheduled to be played on March 25 but was postponed due to inclement weather.
- Retriever lead-off hitters reached base in each of the first four innings.
- Seven of the nine Retriever starters collected at least one hit in the game.
- Vlasic has lasted six innings and yielded two or fewer runs in three of his last four outings.
- Corbi went 2-for-5 on the day and now has 99 career hits.