Davidson Uses the Long Ball to Power Past The Citadel in SoCon Opener
Davidson, NC -
Davidson pounded out 19 hits including four home runs in a 13-3 victory over The Citadel in the Southern Conference opener for both teams Friday night at Wilson Field.
The Wildcats won their fifth in a row to improve to 8-6 while the Bulldogs dropped to 8-10. The teams will finish the series with a doubleheader on Saturday at 1 p.m. due to a near certainty of rain in the area on Sunday.
The Citadel had 10 hits including three by Johnathan Stokes in his first game back after having his wisdom teeth extracted on Monday. Ryan Kilgallen added his first career home run, a two-run shot in the fifth that temporarily pulled the Bulldogs within 5-2.
Davidson starter Rob Bain went a career-long eight innings, allowing nine hits and all three Citadel runs while striking out five and not walking a batter. Bain's previous long outing was last season when he went seven innings in a win over the Bulldogs at Riley Park.
The Wildcats wasted little time reaching Bulldog starter Logan Cribb, scoring three times in the first highlighted by a two-run double by Sam Foy. Daniel Gerow homered the following inning as Davidson built a quick 5-0 cushion.
Ross White settled things down on the mound, enabling the Bulldogs to sneak back in the game in the fifth when Stokes singled with one out and Kilgallen drove one over the fence in left. But Davidson responded with a pair of leadoff singles in its half of the inning, and Ty Middlebrooks singled in a run off Zach McKay to make it 6-2.
Middlebrooks entered the game as a defensive replacement in the top of the fifth and finished with three hits, including a two-run homer in the eighth, and four RBI. Foy and Ben Arkin also had three hits for the Wildcats while Nathan Becker hit his seventh home run of the season, a total good for second place in the SoCon and third in the nation.
Davidson tacked on four more runs in the seventh and three in the eighth. The Citadel's final run came in the eighth when Mason Davis and Hughston Armstrong singled with one out, and Tyler Griffin drove home Davis with an RBI single to right.