March 21, 2012

Knights Conquer Dragons, Extend Streak to Six

Written by Matthew McKinney 

BUENA VISTA, Va.—The Southern Virginia University baseball team made it six straight with a dominating doubleheader sweep over the visiting Virginia University of Lynchburg Dragons on Wednesday, winning 10-1 and 12-1 in front of a home crowd at Parry McCluer High School. 

With its offense on cruise control and two stellar performances on the mound, Southern Virginia (8-10) kept the resurrected VUL (0-8) baseball program still seeking its first win of the season.

Sophomore shortstop Mitch Stevenson (Muskogee, Okla.) had a huge day at the plate for the Knights finishing with a pair of two-run homers and four RBI, while going 3-for-7 on the day.

Senior outfielder Andrew Snider (Lancaster, Calif.) also had another big outing going 4-for-8 with a homerun and a double to go along with two RBI. 

The long ball was a weapon all day for Southern Virginia as three other Knights—Dale Brown (Mesa, Ariz.), Tyler Cox (Forest, Miss.), and Robert Key (Flower Mound, Texas)—went yard against the Dragons.

Key's homerun in Game Two was the first of his Southern Virginia career as the junior ended the day with two RBI and three runs, while going 4-for-6 at the plate raising his batting average to .400 on the year.

Brown and Cox both homered in Wednesday's opening game against VUL as Cox's solo shot was his first of the year and Brown's three-run blast helped put the game out of reach for the Dragons in the bottom of the fifth.

As a team, Southern Virginia finished with 21 hits and 13 extra-base hits, including seven doubles.

Southern Virginia' starting pitcher Mitch Mantle (St. George, Utah) in Game One went all seven innings for the Knights giving up one run—unearned—and only four hits against the Dragons. Mantle (2-1) struck out three without allowing a single walk during his second win in as many starts, while also going 1-for-3 with an RBI.

Game Two starter Justin King (San Ramon, Calif.) struck out six in four innings pitched earning his second win of the year. The freshman southpaw allowed only one base runner—a third inning single by Dragon's first baseman Denzel Eldridge—after retiring the Dragon's first seven hitters to open the game.

Eldridge went 2-for-4 in the doubleheader and knocked in the Dragons only RBI of the day in the final inning of Game Two against Snider, who pitched one inning in relief of King. 

Baseball hopes to make it seven in a row on Thursday, Mar 22, as the Knights take on Eastern Mennonite University (7-15) in Covington, Va. at 7 p.m. EST.