Randolph-Macon baseball wins one, loses one against Hampden-Sydney
Randolph-Macon’s baseball team won one and lost one against archrival Hampden-Sydney last week.
Playing in Ashland March 13, freshman Mitchell Keeler hit for the cycle and drove in six runs as Randolph-Macon defeated Hampden-Sydney 13-11. The victory moved R-MC to 7-6 overall and 3-2 in the ODAC.
The Yellow Jackets were led offensively by the heart of the order, as Keeler, Jeb Weymouth, Tim Benjamin, and Jon Witt all had multi-RBI games.
Keeler got R-MC on the board early with a RBI double in the first, scoring Michael Trentham. After a RBI groundout from Benjamin, Witt then blasted a long solo home run over the left field fence to put the Jackets up 3-0.
After Hampden-Sydney got a run back in the second, Keeler then hit a three-run home run for the Yellow Jackets, extending the lead to 6-1.
Randolph-Macon extended the lead to 9-1 in the fourth, thanks to RBI hits from Weymouth, Benjamin, and Witt.
In the bottom of the fifth, Keeler hit a long shot to the right field corner for a RBI triple to complete the rare cycle.
Hampden-Sydney would not be going away quietly in the ninth, staging a late rally. After a RBI double off the bat of Jeff Gray, Beau Flinchum hit a three-run blast over the left field fence to cut the lead to 13-11.
Randolph-Macon reliever JT Williamson would slam the door on any hopes of a comeback, though, earning a strikeout and a flyout to end the game.
Freshman Daniel Byrd gave R-MC a quality start on the mound, tossing six innings of one-run ball, while striking out three. For his efforts, Byrd earned his first collegiate victory.
Keeler finished his record-setting day going five-for-five with six RBI and four runs scored.
An ODAC doubleheader against Eastern Mennonite scheduled for Saturday was postponed until April 7 due to weather.
When they returned to play Tuesday in Farmville, Randolph-Macon’s four-game winning streak came to an end with a 9-4 loss at Hampden-Sydney. With the loss, Randolph-Macon moved to 7-7 overall and 3-3 in the ODAC
R-MC first baseman Jon Witt led off the top of the second with a solo homerun, his second in as many games, to give the Yellow Jackets an early 1-0 edge.
Beau Flinchum and Jack Elliot came through with RBI singles to highlight a three-run third inning rally for the Tigers to go on top 3-1.
After a scoreless fourth and fifth, Hampden-Sydney rallied for six runs on four hits in the bottom of the sixth. James Keller capped the big inning with a two-run homerun.
Jake Fletcher doubled home Nate Meiners in the seventh to cut the Tigers’ advantage to 9-2. A walk to Tim Benjamin and a double by Michael Kroll in the eighth set up Mark Heideman to drive in both runners with a double.
Randolph-Macon could not put together a ninth inning rally, and Hampden-Sydney held on for the 9-4 win and a split of the season series.
Mitchell Keeler hit singles in his first two opportunities at the plate and ran his consecutive at bats with a hit streak to seven which ties the Randolph-Macon team record. Keeler, the reigning ODAC Player of the Week, had five consecutive hits last week against Hampden-Sydney and completed the cycle.
Michael Helbig (2-3) is saddled with the loss on the mound after allowing three runs on seven hits with two strikeouts in three innings on the mound. Jake Bram tossed two innings of one hit ball while Glenn McLaughlin and Will Jennings combined for two perfect innings on the back end.
Patrick Kuhns paced Hampden-Sydney at the dish with a three-for-four outing. Aaron Stidham (2-0) allowed two runs on five hits over seven innings in the win.
The Yellow Jackets return to action Thursday, March 21 when they travel to Catholic University for a 3:30 p.m. contest.