WEST POINT – The Army West Point baseball team (18-12, 8-2 PL) defeated the Lehigh Mountain Hawks (13-19, 1-9, PL) 3-0 in Game 1 of a three-game series Saturday afternoon. Army starter Tanner Gresham pitched a complete game shutout, allowing three hits, and no runs, and struck out six batters.
In Game 2, the Black Knights defeated the Mountain Hawks 8-4 in a comeback win. Army’s Kevin Dubrule hit a grand slam, giving the Black Knights the lead, securing the win for Army.
Game 1 (Army Wins 3-0, 7 innings)
Army attacked Lehigh starter Luke Rettig (L, 4-3) in the bottom of the first inning, with Derek Berg hitting a leadoff single to right center, putting a runner on base. Sam Ruta walked, putting a runner in scoring position. Senior Kevin Dubrule hit a bunt, loading the bases. Ross Friedrick followed, ripping a 2RBI single to center field, sending Ruta and Berg in to score, giving the Black Knights a 2-0 lead. Braden Golinski grounded out to third base, Friedrick to second, and Dubrule across the plate, extending Army lead to 3-0. The Mountain Hawks ended the inning with two ground outs.
With one out in the top of the third, Lehigh threatened Army starter Tanner Gresham (W, 3-1). Jake Whitlinger was hit by a pitch, putting a runner on first. Junior Tyler Young ripped a single to left field, advancing Whitlinger to second, putting a runner in scoring position. Whitlinger advanced to third after Casey Rother flew out to right field. Army cleared the side after Rafe Perich flew out third base.
The Black Knights attempted to extend their lead in the bottom of the fifth. With one out, freshman Addison Ainsworth walked, putting a runner on first. Ainsworth stole second, putting a runner in scoring position. Rettig walked Derek Berg, putting two runners on. The Mountain Hawked retired the side with a strikeout and a fly-out.
With both pitchers shining throughout the game, Tanner Gresham cleared the side in the top of the sixth inning after Rother was walked, putting a runner on base.
With two outs in the top of the seventh, Army secured the win with two fly-outs and a groundout.
Game 2 (Army wins 8-4)
With Army down by one run in the bottom of the seventh, Kevin Dubrule hit a grand slam, which was the deciding factor in the game, securing the 8-4 win for the Black Knights.
In the bottom of the second, Army quickly started to threaten Lehigh starter Alex Bouchard (No Decision). With one out, sophomore Coleson Titus hit a single to right field, putting a runner on first. Titus advanced to second, on a groundout, putting a runner in scoring position.
In the bottom of the third, the Mountain Hawks attacked Army starter Mike Ruggieri (No Decision). With two outs, Lehigh’s Jake Whitlinger ripped a single to left field, putting on first. Whitlinger stole second, putting a runner in scoring position. Tyler Young hit an RBI single to shortstop, advancing Whitlinger to third. On a throwing error, Whitlinger scored, giving the Mountain Hawks a 1-0 lead. Lehigh took a 3-0 lead after Casey Rother hit a 2-run home run. Army cleared the side after Rafe Perich fouled out.
In the top of the fifth, Ruggieri retired the side with a fly-out and two strikeouts.
In the top of the sixth inning, the Mountain Hawks put a runner on base after Young hit a single, putting a runner on first.
Sean Dennehy came in to relief for Mike Ruggieri. Army cleared the side with a double play and a strikeout.
In the top of the seventh inning, Lehigh took a 4-0 lead after Joe Gorla ripped an RBI double to center field, sending in Justin Butler in to score. With one out, Dom Patrizi was walked, putting runners on first and second. Dennehy struck out Davis. With the bases loaded with two outs, Dennehy retired the side with a strikeout.
In the bottom of the seventh, Andrew Kohl came into right field for Riley Davis.
The Black Knights began their comeback attempt. Hitting leadoff, Ross Friedrick put Army on the board after hitting a solo home run, making it a 4-1 game. Lehigh’s Shane O’Neill came in to pitch relief for Bouchard. Braden Golinski walked, putting a runner on first.
Sophomore Coleson Titus ripped a single to left field, putting runners on first and second.
With one out, Justin Lehman came in to pinch-hit for Bret Copeland. Titus and Golisnkski stole second and third, and Golinski scored off an error by catcher Justin Butler, cutting the Mountain Hawks lead to 4-2. Army got within one run after Lehman hit an RBI single down the right field line, sending Titus across the plate, Lehman advanced to second on the throw, putting a runner in scoring position.
Will Grisack came in relief for Shane O’Neill.
Chris Barr came into the game to pinch run for Lehman. The Black Knights put runners on first and second after Addison Ainsworth was hit by a pitch. Army had runners on second and third after Ainsworth and Barr advanced off a wild pitch. With two outs, Grisack intentionally walked Sam Ruta, loading the bases. Kevin Dubrule ripped a grand slam to left field, giving the Black Knights a 7-4 lead, their first lead of the day. Lehigh ended the inning with a strikeout.
Thomas Schreck came into the game for Justin Lehman, covering second base.
With two outs in the top of the eighth inning, Patrick Melampy came into relief for Sean Dennehy. Army retired the side with a groundout.
In the bottom of the eighth, Ryan Deom came in to relief for Will Grisack.
Golinski hit a leadoff single, putting a runner on first. Golinski stole second, and advanced to third on the throw, putting a runner in scoring position. With one out, Army put runners on the corners after Ethan Ellis walked. Freshman Thomas Schreck hit a sacrifice fly, sending Golinski in to score, giving the Black Knights an 8-4 lead. The Mountain Hawks ended the inning with a fly-out.
Army secured the win in the top of the ninth inning after retiring the side.