LEXINGTON, VA -
VMI jumped to a 7-0 lead and held off a late rally to beat Charleston Southern, 7-6, on Friday night at Gray-Minor Stadium. The Keydets improve to 24-22 overall and 10-15 in Big South play, while CSU falls to 29-23 on the year and 11-13 in conference play. The teams play a doubleheader tomorrow at 1 p.m. CSU needs a win in either game on Saturday or a Gardner-Webb loss to Presbyterian to secure a berth in next week’s Big South Championship. The Bucs still also have an outside shot at the South Division title with a sweep and some help with losses by division foes. VMI bounced to a 7-0 lead through two innings behind three early CSU errors. Starter Tory Schroff (LP, 5-3) gave up five earned runs in 1.2 innings of work.
Reliever Kyle McDorman had six shutout innings of relief with four strikeouts to give his team a chance to put on some pressure late. The Bucs loaded the bases in the sixth, but could push across only one run, and again filled them in the ninth, but closer Berkley Hawkins was able to get a game-ending strikeout to work out of the jam. Zack Hagaman and Chase Shelton both had singles and Cody Austin followed with a two-out walk to jam the bases. Keydet’s shortstop Tanner Dofflemyer stole a hit from Alex Tomasovich, snagging a hard-hit line drive with the bases empty. A throwing error by Bucs’ shortstop Kevin Hickey and an RBI groundout by Matt Winn gave the Keydets a pair of unearned runs in the first. VMI added five runs in the second as Winn deleievered again, this time with a two-run single off of Schroff. Jordan Tarsovich added a sacrifice fly and Cameron Walter followed with an RBI double as the Keydets piled up six hits in the at-bat. CSU would climb right back in the game in the fourth as Hagaman stroked a three-run home run to right field to cut the lead to 7-4. CSU had three hits in the inning. Shelton drove home Alex Tomasovich with the game’s first run with an RBI single to right. Centerfielder Bobby Ison had the Bucs’ next two RBI. The first coming in the sixth as VMI chose to put the junior on with an intentional walk with the bases loaded.
He added an RBI double in the eighth to score Nick Berry and cut the Keydet’s lead to the final margin. Ison, Hagaman, and Shelton all finished with three hits. Hagaman was 3-for-5 with three RBI and two runs. Ison’s 3-for-4 night pushed his single-season record to 88 hits and he now has 244 career hits and is tied for second in CSU history.?