Baseball: Doubleheader Sweep Over Iona
By Allison Hoehn for MSNsportsNET.com
March 15, 2008
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. - Senior Tyler Kuhn finished with four RBIs in game one, and junior Austin Markel set a new Hawley Field record with three home runs in game two, as the Mountaineers won both ends of today’s doubleheader against Iona, 7-2 in a seven-inning game and 12-2 in a nine-inning contest, at Hawley Field.
Kuhn finished the doubleheader with four hits, four runs, one home run and one triple. Markel’s three home runs broke the previous record of two which had been done 30 times at Hawley Field, most recently by Trent Ridgley on April 13, 2007 against Cincinnati. The center fielder also recorded a career-high five RBIs in game 2 to break his previous best of three set on Feb. 23, 2008, against Akron.
Vince Belnome finished with five hits, two runs scored and four RBIs for the Mountaineers in the two games, and Austin Markel had four hits, four runs and five RBIs.
In game one, junior starter Josh Whitlock (4-0) threw a complete-game victory, pitching seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits, striking out seven and walking two. Bobby DiNuzzo (0-3) dropped his third decision of the season, pitching 4.1 innings, giving up five runs on six hits, striking out three and walking two.
West Virginia scored seven runs on eight hits, while Iona scored two runs on five hits and committed two errors.
The Mountaineers scored three runs in the first inning to take an early lead. Junior Justin Parks scored on Vince Belome’s single, Markel’s single plated Belnome and then he scored on Joe Agreste’s single to right field.
WVU scored single runs in the second and fifth innings. In the second inning, freshman Jedd Gyorko drove in junior Jordon Yost with an RBI single to left center field to put the Mountaineers ahead, 5-0.
In the fifth inning, Kuhn singled to center field, stole second and advanced to third on a Gael throwing error, before Belnome plated Kuhn with a single RBI to left center field.
The Gales answered in the sixth inning when Mike Walraven singled, Trevor Hybner walked and both advanced on a wild pitch. Paul Salerno singled to plate Walraven, and Joe Lorenzo drove in Hybner with a single RBI to cut WVU’s lead 5-2.
Kuhn set the record with a two-run homer over center field to drive in Dan DiBartolomeo, extending Mountaineer lead to 7-2.
In game two, WVU (12-4) scored 12 runs on 12 hits, while Iona (0-9) scored two runs on four hits and committed one error.
Mountaineer pitcher Stephen Morrison (3-0) earned his third win of the season, pitching eight innings, giving up two runs, on four hits, walking five batters and striking out four.
The Gaels got on the board first in the second inning when Walraven singled down the right field line to drive in Chris Leahy who singled to right field and stole second.
Markel’s first home run in the fifth inning knotted the score at 1-1, before the Mountaineers scored five runs in the sixth, two more in the seventh and four more in the eighth.
In the fifth, Gyorko’s triple to center field scored Kuhn, Belnome’s single up the middle scored Gyorko, before Markel blasted his second home run to drive in Streich and Belnome.
Grant Buckner scored on a passed ball in the seventh inning, and Gyorko’s sacrifice fly to center field drove in Parks to put the Mountaineers ahead 8-1.
Leahy was walked in the eighth inning, advanced to second and third on two walks by Summers and scored off of a sacrifice fly by Salerno to center field.
The game ended in the eighth inning due to the 10-run mercy rule. Markel hit his third home run of the game for the new Hawley Field record. Kuhn hit an RBI double down the right field line to score Parks and Buckner. Belnome’s RBI single then drove in Kuhn to create the final outcome, 12-4.
The Mountaineers will conclude their four-game series on Sunday, March 16, at Hawley Field. First pitch is set for 1 p.m.