Tuesday, William and Mary dropped its seventh one-run game of the season as Radford closed out a tight 2-1 match. The Tribe (3-10) fell to the Highlanders (4-8) after it was unable to put together a comeback to match a late go-ahead run from Radford.
Redshirt sophomore pitcher Chris Farrell started the game with a strong five innings, limiting Radford to zero hits in the second and third innings. Nevertheless, the Highlanders were the first to break the scoreless tie as Clayton Baine notched the first run of the game in the fifth inning to put the away team up 1-0. However, the Tribe didn’t let the Radford lead stand for long. After freshman relief pitcher Justin Pearson kept the Highlanders again without hits in the top of the sixth, the College got on the scoreboard with a run from freshman infielder Matt McDermott that tied the game at 1-1 going into the seventh inning. McDermott’s tally marked his second run in two games and his sixth on the season.
After a quick seventh inning, Radford was once again the first team to break the deadlock. In the top of the eighth, the Highlanders eked two hits out of the Tribe that resulted in a run, leaving the College trailing 2-1. But, after striking out the last Radford batter to close out the inning,the game was still within the College’s reach.
With help from a bunt and a fly out from McDermott and junior infielder Nick Butts, respectively, sophomore first baseman Matthew Trehub got as far as third base in the bottom of the eighth. Nothing would come of the team’s resilient effort, however, as Highlander infielders caught a Tribe popout, cutting the inning short before Trehub could run home.
That runner on third base was as close as the Tribe would get to catching Radford’s lead. Although it held the Highlanders to zero runs in the top of the ninth, the College was unable to connect for a hit of its own on the team’s last turn at bat and fell by one run in a final score of 2-1. Junior catcher Hunter Smith was the only Tribe batter to record multiple hits in a tightly-pitched match where Radford just edged out the College in hits, 7-6.
Seven out of the Tribe’s 13 matches this season have been decided by a single run. Only one out of those seven close games have resulted in a College victory. With this midweek loss, the Tribe falls to 3-10 on the season. The Tribe will look to even the score with Radford Wednesday as it faces the Highlanders for the second of a two-game series.