Courtesy: Fordham

Fordham Baseball Downed by West Virginia in NCAA Opener

By Atlantic 10 Conference

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Morgantown, W. Va. – (May 31, 2019) – West Virginia's Tyler Doanes and Ivan Gonzalez each drove in two runs, while Kade Strowd threw four innings of hitless relief, as the #15 national seed Mountaineers topped the Fordham Rams, 6-2, in the second game of the NCAA Morgantown Regional, held at Monongalia County Ballpark.
 
With the loss, Fordham is now 38-23 on the year and move into the elimination side of the bracket, while West Virginia improved to 38-20 and move on in the winner's bracket.
 
"I'm proud of how the guys battled all game long," said head coach Kevin Leighton after the game.  "We got the early lead and had some chances, but just couldn't capitalize enough tonight."
 
Fordham got on the board right away in the first inning.  With one out, Jake MacKenzie drew a walk and moved to second on a single by Alvin MelendezMatt Tarabek then lined a single to right field to score MacKenzie for a 1-0 lead.
 

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The Rams kept it a 1-0 game in the second with some stellar defense as Billy Godrick made a leaping catch against the centerfield wall to rob a Mountaineer of extra bases, while C.J. Vazquez made a diving catch up the middle to take away another hit.

 
West Virginia then struck for three runs in the bottom of the third inning, as the Mountaineers worked five walks off Fordham starter John Stankiewicz.  The runs came in a wild pitch, a sacrifice fly by Darius Hill, and a bases loaded walk to Ivan Gonzalez.
 
The Mountaineers added to the lead in the sixth, picking up a two-run double by Tyler Doanes, making it a 5-1 score.  West Virginia then got an RBI-double by Ivan Gonzalez for a 6-1 edge.
 
Fordham got a run back in the top of the eighth, making it a 6-2 ballgame.  Vazquez was hit by a pitch to start the inning, followed by a walk to MacKenzie.  After a fly out, the Mountaineers tried to turn the inning-ending double play but the relay throw was wide of first, allowing Vazquez to score.
 
The Rams would get a couple of runners on in the ninth on a couple of walks, but could not solve reliever Kade Strowd, as he allowed no hits over four innings of relief, giving up one run on four walks with five strikeouts for his first save of the season.  West Virginia starter Nick Snyder (9-1) recorded the win, allowing one run on four hits with three walks and six strikeouts.
 
For Fordham, Stankiewicz (8-4) took the loss, allowing three runs over 2.2 innings of work, while Matt Mikulski went 3.1 innings, giving up two runs with six strikeouts.  Anthony Zimmerman allowed one run in his one inning of work with Mike Cowell posting a scoreless inning in the eighth.  At the plate, Vazquez and Tarabek were each 1-for-4, while Melendez and Jake Baker had the remaining hits for Fordham.
 
The Rams will now face Texas A&M on Saturday, June 1st, in an elimination game, starting at 2:00 PM.

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