JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - UVa-Wise and Edward Walters College split a pair of one-run games on Sunday. The host Tigers took game one 7-6 on a walk off single by Neil Martino before the Cavaliers (3-3) erased a seven run deficit to claim a 10-9 victory in the series finale.
Edward Walters' Travonne Fuller belted a grand slam in the bottom of the first inning in the day's opening game to cap off a six run frame. UVa-Wise would play catch-up for the remainder of the game. The visitors scored a run in the top of the first and added a single run in the top of the second to cut the lead to four at 6-2.
Neither school would score again until the seventh inning when the Cavs mounted a four run rally. In the inning, Tommy Meier led off the inning with a double, his fourth hit of the game. Following a Matt Murphy walk and a Tyler Hutson fly out, Steven Klaiber walked to load the bases for Michael McCollum. McCollum lined a two RBI double. One batter later, Kirk Jennings produced a ground out RBI to cut the lead to one at 6-5. Senior Brian King stood as the last hope for UVa-Wise when he ripped a two-out, RBI single plating the game-tying run.
The comeback would be short lived for the Cavs as Neil Martino drove home the winning run with a bases loaded single. Martino's hit guaranteed the Tigers of the series win; Edward Walters swept the series opening double header on Saturday.
Similar to game one, UVa-Wise found itself in an early run deficit. The Tigers broke open the game with six, first run innings and added a seventh run in the second to lead 7-1 entering the third frame. In the third inning, the two sides traded a pair of runs as Hylton and McCollum had RBI hits for the Cavs and Martino had a two RBI single for the Tigers.
The Cavs would score for a second consecutive inning in the fourth on an RBI ground out by Chaz Hall to cut the lead to five. Two innings later, UVa-Wise would have its highest scoring inning of the season to take the lead. The Cavs would strike for three hits and take advantage of two walks, a hit by pitch, and an error to push across six runs. Hylton delivered the big blow as he connected for a three RBI single to tie the game. UVa-Wise would eventually take the lead on an error allowing Brandon Fletcher to score, Fletcher entered the game to pinch run for Hylton.
Freshman Jake Huff entered the game with a one run lead and the right hander retired all six batters he faced, three by strike out, to earn his first collegiate save. Huff's performance finished off four scoreless innings of work by the UVa-Wise bullpen. Danny Bates tossed a scoreless inning with one strikeout prior to Cody Jewell throwing a scoreless frame to notch his first career win. In total, the bullpen struck out four, allowed one walk, and did not allow a hit in the four scoreless innings.
Meier would finish game two with two hits to run his total for the day to six. Following the double header the senior catcher is hitting .577 through the season's first six games.
Head Coach Hank Banner's UVa-Wise club will return to play on Tuesday when the team travels to NCAA Division II member Lincoln Memorial University for a 2:00 p.m. start.