Means’ Complete Game Leads WVU


Baseball
By Grant Dovey for WVUsports.com
March 19, 2014 09:00 PM
West Virginia 5, No. 12 North Carolina 1
Postgame Media
Postgame Reaction (3:26)
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Junior left-hander John Means faced the minimum and no-hit No. 12 North Carolina through five innings en route to a complete game 5-1 win on Wednesday evening at Boshamer Stadium.
 
"He was on all night long, he had all three pitches going," coach Randy Mazey says. "We gave him this game on short notice and when you do that to a pitcher, you don't know what you're going to get because they have routines between starts. We threw him into the fire here and he responded unbelievably. That was one of the best pitched games we've had all year."
 
Means (4-1) becomes the first Mountaineer to throw a complete game this season and allowed one run on three hits with five strikeouts and no walks. The win improves WVU’s record to 11-6 as the Mountaineers scored five runs on nine hits with no errors.
 
"My fastball command saved me a lot today," Means says. "I tried to spot up with that the entire game and they're a fastball hitting team, so I tried to get them to roll over and get themselves out most of the time."
 
Senior first baseman Ryan McBroom went 3-for-4 with one double and one run scored. Junior second baseman Billy Fleming and junior third baseman Justin Fox each had two hits and two RBIs.
 
West Virginia scored the games first runs in the top of the fifth, taking a 2-0 lead. After getting hit by a pitch with one out, junior designated hitter Max Nogay scored from third base on an RBI ground out to second base by junior center field Bobby Boyd. Fleming singled to left center field in the next at bat to drive in junior shortstop Taylor Munden.
 
North Carolina cut the WVU lead in half in the bottom of the seventh. Pinch hitter Adam Pate doubled to left center field with two outs, scoring Michael Russell, but Pate was thrown out trying to stretch the hit into a triple for the third out of the inning.
 
A two-out rally by West Virginia in the top of the eighth extended the Mountaineer lead to 4-1. Fox smacked a full-count two-out single to center field, scoring McBroom and senior Michael Constantini. McBroom drove a leadoff double to the center fielder wall and Constantini drew a pinch-hit walk with two outs.
 
UNC starter Luis Paula (1-0) gave up two runs on four hits in 4.2 innings with four strikeouts and two walks. Four relievers saw action for the Tar Heels with Reilly Hovis being the most effective, allowing one hit in 1.1 innings.
 
Russell, Pate and Parks Jordan had one hit apiece to lead North Carolina offensively.
 
West Virginia will stay in the state of North Carolina and take on UNC Wilmington in a three-game series. Friday’s game will begin at 4 p.m., Saturday’s game will start at 2 p.m. and Sunday’s finale will start at 1 p.m. A link to live video and stats is available via WVUsports.com.
 
The Mountaineers open the home season at Hawley Field against Pitt in the “Backyard Brawl” on Tuesday, March 25 at 3 p.m. To order tickets, visit: http://bit.ly/1gIDVAd.



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