WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – The William and Mary baseball team used a pair of runs in the bottom of the ninth inning to leapfrog UMBC in a 2-1 walkoff victory on Friday afternoon at Plumeri Park. With one out, and runners on the corners, senior Kevin Casey’s bunt single, brought home junior Michael Katz to win the game. With the win, the Tribe improves to 4-4 on the season, while UMBC drops to 0-1.
For the third straight start, junior Jason Inghram impressed on the hill. Inghram tossed eight innings, allowed only one infield hit, while he fanned six UMBC hitters. The only run he allowed was unearned in his second no decision of the season.
UMBC manufactured an unearned run in the top of the fourth inning. Rob McCabe led off the inning with a walk. After a Tribe error, UMBC had runners on first and second with nobody out. During the next at-bat a wild pitch allowed McCabe to reach third. Inghram settled in and got Kevin Lachance to ground into a double play, but McCabe came around to score, giving the Retrievers a 1-0 advantage.
The Retrievers had a chance to add to their lead in the top of the ninth inning. Mark Espisito led off the inning with an infield single, moving to second on a Tribe error. With runners on first and second, Vince Corbi laid down a sacrifice bunt, putting runners on second and third. With the infield in, sophomore Joseph Gaouette got Lachance to groundout, and followed with a strikeout of Anthony Gatto, to end the inning and strand the runners on second and third.
William and Mary responded with two runs to win the game in the home half of the ninth inning. Senior Ryan Lindemuth led off the inning with a walk, moving to third on a double by Katz. After a strikeout, Lindemuth came around to score on an error, moving Katz to third, and tying the score. The next batter, Casey bunted successful down the first baseline, scoring Katz, and giving the Tribe the 2-1 victory.
Gaouette, who pitched the one inning of relief, earned his first victory of the season for the Green and Gold. Bobby Applegate was charged with his first loss of the season for UMBC.
Through three outings, Inghram has posted a 0.82 ERA, allowed just 13 hits and whiffed 22 opposing batters in 22 innings of work.
The comeback victory is the fourth time the Tribe has tied or gained the lead in the ninth inning, or later. William and Mary finished the game with 10 hits as team, while the Tribe pitching limited to UMBC to two infield singles.
W&M and UMBC continue their three-game series tomorrow, Saturday, March 1 at 2 p.m., before concluding the set on Sunday, March 2 at 1 p.m. All games will be played at Plumeri Park.