Sunday, June 25, 2017

WVU rallies past Terps, advances to regional final

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C.–Jackson Sigman dazzled on the mound as the second-seeded West Virginia University baseball team rallied to beat third-seeded Maryland 8-5 on Sunday afternoon at David F. Couch Ballpark in the Winston-Salem Regional.

The Mountaineers (36-25) trailed 4-0 but overtook the Terrapins (38-23) with four runs on four hits in the eighth inning to take an 8-4 lead. 

Hanging on what could have been his final performance in the old gold and blue, Sigman pitched his heart out for his team. The senior tossed 4.2 innings of relief, surrendering one run on four hits while striking out seven.

Darius Hill went 3-for-4 with two runs scored for WVU. Brandon Gum had two hits and three RBI for Maryland.

During the bottom half of the second, Marty Costes gave the Terps a 1-0 lead with a solo shot to left center.

In the third, Kade Strowd issued a walk to Justin Morris, who scored on a two-out Gum double.

The Mountaineers had an opportunity to close on the 2-0 deficit in the fourth but John Murphy came on in relief and struck out the side to get out of the bases loaded jam.

Gum’s two-run homer extended Maryland’s lead to 4-0 in the bottom of the fifth.

However, WVU got on the board in the sixth. With one out, Hill double to left field and moved up 90 feet on a passed ball. Cole Austin’s ground out scored Hill and cut the Mountaineers deficit to 4-1.

Jackson Sigman tossed a 1-2-3 bottom half, setting the stage for WVU to start its comeback.

In the seventh, Kyle Davis led off with a double and went to third on Braden Zarbnisky’s single to center. Jimmy Galusky’s groundout plated Davis and Zarbnisky scored on Kevin Brophy’s base hit, cutting the Terps lead to 4-3.

The never-quit Mountaineers completed the rally in the eighth.

Hill led off the frame with a base hit and scored on Jackson Cramer’s double to tie the game. Then Maryland intentionally walked Davis. Zarbnisky’s single through the right side gave WVU a 5-4 lead. But the Mountaineers weren’t done there. Jimmy Galusky’s base hit through the left side scored Davis. With the bases loaded, Kyle Gray drew a walk to push the lead to 7-4.

WVU tacked on an insurance run in the ninth.

In the bottom half, Nick Dunn hit a solo home run to make it a three-run game. With runners at second and third, Sigman struck out the final two batters to seal the victory.

Strowd started the game and pitched 4.1 frames. He gave up four runs on five hits.

The Mountaineers will play Wake Forest in the regional final at 5 p.m. If necessary, a final game will be played on Monday, June 4, at 7 p.m., to crown a regional champion.

Cover Photo Credit: Dale- Sparks- All Pro Photography- WVU Sports

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