HARRISONBURG, Va., March 31, 2012 - Delaware blew open a two-run game with a five-run seventh inning and held on in the final inning to defeat James Madison 10-7 in the middle game of a Colonial Athletic Association baseball series on Saturday night at Eagle Field at Veterans Memorial Park.
UD clinched the series win and improved to 13-14 overall and 6-5 in the CAA. JMU lost its ninth straight home game to fall to 6-20-1 overall and 1-10 in the CAA.
Corey Crispell worked seven innings for the Delaware win to improve to 4-1. He allowed three runs on four hits in the third inning but otherwise limited JMU to three hits in the other six innings of his outing. JMU rallied from a 10-4 deficit to bring the potential tying run to the on-deck circle in the ninth to make it a save situation. Stephen Richter entered to record the final out on a strikeout for the second straight day to post his fourth save.
Left fielder Tyler Powell reached base four times with three singles and a walk for Delaware. Center fielder Cameron Travalini went 2-for-5 with three RBIs. First baseman Jimmy Yezzo singled, doubled, walked twice and scored three times. Second baseman D.J. Long doubled twice and drove in a pair of runs.
It was a 3-3 ballgame until Delaware pulled ahead with two runs in the fifth and made it a commanding 10-3 lead with a five-run seventh.
JMU tried to make it a late rally with one run in the eighth and three in the ninth. But with one runner aboard, sophomore third baseman Conner Brown (Richmond, Va./Godwin) struck out looking against Richter on a full-count pitch on a close call at the plate.
Junior left fielder Colby Roberts (Benton, Ark./Benton) had his first three-hit game as well as first three-RBI game at JMU while extending his hitting streak to eight games. Junior second baseman Casey Goss (Springfield, Mo./Glendale) had two hits for his seventh straight multiple-hit game to extend his JMU season-best nine-game hitting streak. Freshman shortstop Chad Carroll (Oakton, Va./Oakton) was 2-for-3 with a walk.
Junior right-hander Nick Slogik (Strongsville, Ohio/St. Edward) took the loss for James Madison after allowing two runs on three hits in his only inning of work in the fifth. Freshman Patrick Arnold (Roanoke, Va./Northside) allowed one hit with three strikeouts in the last two innings as JMU tried to mount its late comeback.
After JMU had a runner thrown out at the plate to end the bottom of the first, Delaware broke through for the lead in the second. Yezzo and Powell started the inning with singles and advanced on a grounder. Travalini singled up the middle to drive in both for the 2-0 advantage.
In the third, catcher Andrew Burgess led off with a single and reached second when an attempt to retire the lead runner on a fielder's choice resulted in a throw into center field. Right fielder Nick Ferdinand then plated Burgess with a double to left center to make it 3-0.
JMU broke through in the third to knot the game at 3-3. Freshman first baseman Aaron Hoover (Centreville, Va./Westfield) led off with an infield single up the middle and Carroll doubled to left. Junior center fielder Cole McInturff (Centreville, Va./Westfield) grounded out to first to score the first JMU run of the game. After a walk to put runners on the corners, Goss singled just past the diving first baseman to drive in Carroll. Roberts added a high chopper over the head of the third baseman for an RBI single to tie it at 3-3.
Long led off the Delaware fifth with a double to the corner in left. He moved around the bases on groundouts by shortstop Brock Niggebrugge and Ferdinand to put the Blue Hens back in front 4-3. With the bases emptied, UD kept the inning going with a full-count walk by Yezzo and a single to right by Powell to put runners on the corners. Designated hitter Chris Branigan then reached on a single up the middle for a 5-3 lead.
In the seventh, Ferdinand led off with a walk and came all the way around to score on a double to right center by Yezzo. After an infield single, Travelini doubled to the corner in left to drive in Yezzo for a 7-3 lead. Hartley dropped a squeeze bunt to score a charging Powell to make it 8-3. Long belted a two-run double to the gap in left center to cap the uprising and make it 10-3.
JMU got one run back in the eighth as Goss singled, moved to second on a single to center by Brown and scored on a throwing error by the shortstop to make it10-4.
Senior pinch hitter Evan Scott (Haymarket, Va./Battlefield) led off the JMU ninth with a double to the corner in left. McInturff was hit by a pitch and Duke singled through the left side to score Scott. Both runners advanced as freshman right fielder Tyler Duke (Troutville, Va./James River) was retired on a bang-bang play at first. Roberts then laced a two-run single to left center to make it 10-7. He advanced a base on a passed ball following the pitching change. Brown worked the count full but was called out looking on a pitch under his hands on the inside part of the plate to end the game.
Game three of the series will be Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m.