William and Mary (8-9) swept George Mason (7-12) this weekend to break their six-game losing streak. After hosting the first game at Plumeri Park, William and Mary traveled to Fairfax for two road games at George Mason. The Tribe outscored the Patriots 20-9 during the series.
In the first game, William and Mary heavily relied on their explosive offense. After being down 3-0 in the third inning, the team scored four runs in the fourth inning. By the end of the fifth inning they jumped out to a 5-3 lead and did not look back.
They added another run in the sixth inning and three more in the eighth to give the pitching staff a comfortable edge coming down the stretch. Nine different players recorded a hit throughout the game, but graduate student David Hogarth was the only player to record two hits in the game. He finished 2 for 4 with two RBIs and one run.
Senior Zach Tsakounis started on the mound for William and Mary. He got off to a rocky start, giving up five hits and three runs in three innings pitched.
Freshman Mike Weidinger came into the game in the fourth inning and recorded three strikeouts and no walks. He was credited with the first win of his college career. Freshman Carter Lovasz then pitched the final three innings, allowing just one hit and receiving credit for the save. The final score of the first game was 9-3.
The second game of the series was a pitching duel. Although both teams recorded seven hits during the game, they each struggled with leaving men on base. The Tribe struck first in the fifth inning when sophomore Nate Goranson scored on a sacrifice fly by senior Matt Thomas.
Junior Casey Green pitched lights out for the Tribe, lasting seven innings and giving up just two hits. Graduate student Randy Prosperi came in for the eighth inning but struggled, allowing five hits and a run in 2.1 innings. George Mason scored in the eighth off an RBI single. With neither team able to score in the ninth inning, the game went into extras.
After a scoreless 10th inning, Hogarth singled up the middle to drive in junior Joe Delossantos, putting William and Mary ahead. Junior Matt Howat pitched 1.1 innings and gave up no hits to seal the deal for the Tribe. He received credit for the win, his first of the season.
After a nerve-wracking second game on the road, the Tribe got off to a slow start in the series finale. The Patriots managed to score one run in the first inning and held the lead for three innings. Senior Jack Cone allowed a leadoff single and several wild pitches that brought in the first run for George Mason.
William and Mary’s bats came alive in the fourth inning and they tied the game at one apiece. Junior Ben Williamson hit a single to center field, followed by a double to right center from Cone. Goranson followed with an RBI grounder that drove Williamson into home.
The Patriots responded quickly, managing to tack on two more runs in the bottom of the inning. The Tribe crawled back, managing to score another run in the sixth. However, George Mason responded with another run of their own in the seventh.
After cutting the Patriots’ lead down to one in the eighth, the Tribe had one more inning to tie the game or take the lead. Delossantos started off the team with an infield hit. Then, senior Phil Conti reached on an error that advanced Delossantos into scoring position. Junior Mark Trotta hit an RBI grounder that drove in Delossantos to tie the game.
However, the Tribe did not stop there. Conti scored on a single from Thomas to give William and Mary a 5-4 lead. Williamson then drove in Thomas on a single to left center.
Junior Cole Ragone and Williamson each recorded a hit to keep up the momentum, and then Cone was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Goranson. He managed a double that scored a pair of runs and increased the lead to four. Cone later scored on a wild pitch to increase the Tribe lead to 9-4.
The five-run deficit was too big for George Mason, who managed just one run in the bottom of the ninth off a homer. Senior Rojo Prairie pitched the last three innings and recorded his first win of the season.
After a confidence boosting series, the Tribe will travel to Durham, NC, on Tuesday, March 22, to face Duke.