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Roth Tosses Shutout, Fans 10 as #11 R-MC Baseball Sweeps LC

Nick Roth Pitching
Nick Roth Pitching

ASHLAND, Va. – Sophomore Nick Roth III (Henrico, Va./Benedictine) pitched a shutout with 10 strikeouts in the nightcap as the 11th-ranked Randolph-Macon baseball team swept Lynchburg in an ODAC doubleheader Saturday afternoon on Hugh Stephens Field at Estes Park.

The Yellow Jackets (20-7, 9-3 ODAC) took the opener 12-8 before blanking the Hornets (13-15, 4-10) by a score of 17-0 in the nightcap. R-MC had 29 runs and 26 hits on the day.

Roth (3-0) scattered seven hits and walked one. He faced four over the minimum, as the R-MC defense turned four double plays. The first two hitters reached in the top of the ninth for LC, but Roth struck out the final three hitters to preserve the shutout.

The opener was tighter than Game 2. After LC scored in the top of the first in Game 1, R-MC answered in the bottom of the frame. Sophomore Jeff Butler (Chesapeake, Va./Western Branch) had a leadoff homer to left, his third dinger of the season, to knot the score at 1-1. Junior Cole Migliorini (Stafford, Va./Colonial Forge) had a one-out double to left center and scored on a base hit by senior Stuart Brown (Midlothian, Va./Trinity) to give the Yellow Jackets a 2-1 lead.

The Hornets tied the game in the top of the second before the Yellow Jackets regained the lead in the third. Brown drew a leadoff walk, went to second on a base hit by senior Jay Patti (Sparks, Md./Hereford), advanced to third on a walk to sophomore Grant Huckestein (Manassas, Va./Woodbridge) and scored on a single by senior Blake Saathoff (Catonsville, Md./Archbishop Spalding) to give the home team a 3-2 edge. Patti came home on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Ryan Hickman (Ruther Glen, Va./Caroline) and Huckestein came in on a single by freshman Zach Evans (Fort Mill, S.C./Seneca) as the Yellow Jackets expanded their lead to 5-2.

LC posted a pair in the fifth to pull within one. R-MC tallied an add-on run in the sixth. Saathoff ripped a leadoff double to right center, moved to third on a groundout by Hickman and scored on a single by Evans to give the Yellow Jackets a 6-4 advantage.

The Hornets got two runs in the top of the eighth to level the score at 6-6 before R-MC rallied for six in the bottom of the eighth. Evans reached second on an error to start the inning and moved to third when Butler got aboard on a bunt single. Spiers doubled to drive in both runs and put the Yellow Jackets on top for good. Junior Devin Strickler (York, Pa./Eastern York) added a two-run single later in the frame and scored to make it a 12-6 game. LC scored twice in the ninth and loaded the bases to bring the tying run to the plate. But a foul out to left ended the contest.

Butler finished with three hits, two runs and one RBI, while Spiers, Strickler and Evans each had two hits, one run and two RBI.

Spiers (1-1) picked up the win in relief, going 4.0 innings with 10 hits, four runs, one walk and four strikeouts. Freshman Michael Zubovich (Chantilly, Va./Freedom) was the starter, going the first five frames with nine hits, four runs, one walk and two strikeouts.

R-MC started quickly in Game 2, plating four in the first. Butler had a one-out double, moved to third on a single by Spiers and scored on a base hit by Migliorini. Spiers came home on a single by Brown to make it 2-0. Patti reached on a fielder's choice to drive in Migliorini and Brown came in on a fielder's choice by junior Joseph Tuzzolo (Newport News, Va./Menchville) to give the home team a 4-0 advantage.

Sophomore Ian Pape (Stafford, Va./North Stafford) had a two-run single to highlight a six-run third as the R-MC lead ballooned to 10-0.

Migliorini had a two-run single to cap a three-run fifth and Saathoff added a run-scoring single in the sixth to make it a 14-0 contest. In the seventh, sophomore Andrew Mullen (Glen Allen, Va./Douglas Freeman) had a pinch-hit single to lead off the inning and moved to third on a pinch-hit double by senior Herminio Azor (Fairfax, Va./Robinson). Both would score on a pinch-hit two-bagger by freshman Cole Grinde (Woodford, Va./Caroline) to put R-MC on top 16-0. Sophomore Matthew Blaise (Clifton, Va./Centreville) homered in the eighth, his first collegiate big fly.

Migliorini went 3 for 4 with two runs and four RBI, while Saathoff was 3 for 4 with two runs and three RBI for the Yellow Jackets.

Randolph-Macon returns to action on Tuesday, April 11 with a 3:30 p.m. ODAC home contest against Virginia Wesleyan on Hugh Stephens Field at Estes Park.