Davidson Reaches Second Straight A-10 Title Game With 10th Inning Heroics
ST. LOUIS — No. 6 Davidson got an RBI double out of Eric Jones and a shutdown performance by Durin O'Linger on the mound to beat No. 5 Saint Louis 8-7 and advance to the Atlantic 10 Baseball Championship final.
The Wildcats (30-24) will play in their second straight A-10 title game and will face No. 1 seed VCU, Saturday at noon CT on American Sports Network (ASN). Davidson reached the final via the consolation bracket and will need to beat VCU twice Saturday to claim the conference crown.
The Wildcats earned a program-record 30th win and the victory was also the 550th of head coach Dick Cooke's career.
Davidson trailed for most of the game until Brian Fortier's single up the middle in the eighth inning plated two runs and tied the game. Neither team gained an advantage in the remainder of the eight or the ninth, but the Wildcats got a one-out double in the top of the 10th by Eric Jones that scored Alec Acosta.
O'Linger, (8-3) the ‘Cats usual Friday starter during the regular season, didn't let his Wednesday start in Davidson's first game of the tournament bother him. He enter in relief in the eighth, walked the first batter of the ninth inning and then stuck out the next six batters they faced. He earned the win, facing 10 batters and allowing no hits and no rus with the six Ks across the three innings.
Tom Bushnell (1-1) took the loss, throwing 2 1/3 innings and allowing one run on two hits.
Saint Louis (35-22) was led by James Morisano, who was 3-for-5 with a run scored and two RBI. Jones did the damage for Davidson, with a 4-for-5 performance at the plate, two runs scored and an RBI.