BUENA VISTA, Va. — The Southern Virginia University baseball team completed its season sweep of Montreat College on Monday by defeating the Cavaliers 7-3 and 6-4 in a home doubleheader.
Southern Virginia (19-5) previously took both games from Montreat (11-21) during a doubleheader in North Carolina on Mar. 22, 10-4 and 17-1.
Looking to exact revenge after last month's lopsided losses to the Knights, Montreat jumped out to an early lead in Game 1, scoring one run in the top of the first after Southern Virginia's pitcher Darrell Brown gave up hits to the first two Cavalier batters he faced.
A costly two-out error by Montreat in the bottom of the second extended the inning for the Knights allowing them to even the score at one apiece when Mitch Stevenson doubled to drive in Trager Hintze who led off the inning with a double of his own.
Montreat would answer back, however, scoring a run in the top-half of both the third and fourth innings to take a 3-1 lead.
Another Cavalier error in the bottom of the fourth let Southern Virginia pull within one run of the visitors after Stevens recorded his second two-out RBI of the game with a sacrifice fly to score Kyle Rindlisbacher, running in place of catcher Tyler Cox.
In the bottom of the fifth, Southern Virginia batters again came through in the clutch as two-out singles from Hintze and Cox allowed Dale Brown, who had singled earlier in the inning, to cross home and tie the game at 3-3.
While Southern Virginia was beginning to find its rhythm at the plate, Dar. Brown was similarly finding his groove on the mound and retired three straight in the top of the sixth to keep momentum in favor of the Knights.
Two more Montreat errors in the bottom of the sixth left the door open for Southern Virginia to take control of the game and the Knights seized their opportunity scoring four runs on two hits, including a two-RBI triple from Dal. Brown, to grab a 7-3 advantage.
Heading into the top of the seventh with his first lead of the game, Dar. Brown squelched any hopes of a Montreat comeback by forcing a 5-4-3 double play to end the game. With the complete-game win, Dar. Brown moves to 4-3 on the season.
Stevenson finished 2-for-2 with two RBI while Dal. Brown went 2-for-3 and also drove in two runs.
Freshman Mitch Mantle took the mound for Southern Virginia University in Game 2 of Monday's doubleheader with Montreat College and opened up the game with a three-up, three-down top of the first.
During Southern Virginia's first turn at the plate, the Knights seemed to carry over momentum from their last at bat in Game 1—a four-run, two-hit bottom of the sixth—and jumped all over the Cavaliers with five runs on four hits.
With one out and the bases loaded, Cox bent a double down the left-field line to score Jake Johnson and Andrew Snider who had both singled earlier in the inning. Hintze, who had reached after being hit by a pitch, advanced to third on the play. The next batter, Brandon Alexander, walked to re-load the bases for Stevenson, who reached on an error by Montreat's second basemen, which also allowed Hintze and Cox (unearned) to score while Alexander advanced to third. Next up, Ryan Sloan doubled to center field to drive in Alexander for Southern Virginia's final run of the inning.
After another one-two-three at bat from the Cavaliers in the top of the second, Southern Virginia tacked on what would be its final run of the game in the bottom half of the inning. Johnson led off the inning for the Knights with a double down the right-field line, and was then driven home by Hintze who singled to right-center.
The Cavaliers threatened a comeback in the top of the sixth after stringing together back-to-back doubles to score their first run of the game with only one out in the inning. Sensing a possible momentum shift, Coach Mann replaced Mantle with fellow freshman, Kody Parkinson, who got out of the inning allowing only one more run, which was attributed to Mantle.
Parkinson only went two-thirds of an inning before being replaced by another freshman, Jake Messerly, in the top of the seventh after Montreat scored an unearned run with no outs to pull within three runs of the Knights (6-3).
Montreat would pick up another unearned run to make it 6-4, but Messerly got out of the jam to earn the first save of his collegiate career. Mantle, who went five and a third inning while giving up four hits and two earned runs, moved to 2-0 on the season with a 1.46 ERA.
Johnson finished 3-for-4 from the plate with two runs scored and Snider was 2-for-4 for the game.