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In an offensive slug fest, sophomore Cullen Large provided the biggest blow, launching a three-run home run in the bottom of the seventh to give the William & Mary baseball team a come-from-behind, 12-11, win over Holy Cross on Sunday afternoon.
The teams combined for 29 hits, including 11 of the extra base variety, in totaling 23 runs. With the win, W&M (5-2) swept the three-game set from the Crusaders (1-5), coming from behind in all three games.
Senior Charley Gould led the Tribe offensive attack, reaching base in each of his five plate appearance. He was 3-for-3 on the afternoon, scoring three runs and driving in another. Large also scored three times, collecting two hits, including three RBI on his game-winning home run. Junior Tim Hoehn was 2-for-3 on the afternoon with two RBI, while classmate Ryder Miconi drove in a pair of runs as well.
After trailing for the majority of the afternoon, the Tribe pulled even at nine with three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Green and Gold loaded the bases thanks to hit by pitch, walk and error. Hoehn was also hit by a pitch to bring home Gould and draw W&M within two.
Miconi leveled the big hit of the inning with a shot to center field just beyond the reach of Holy Cross center fielder Bobby Indeglia. Large and junior Charles Ameer scored on the play to tie the game at nine. Hoehn tried to score from first on the extra-base hit but was cut down at the plate on a nice series of throws from Indeglia and shortstop Nick Lovullo.
The tie was short lived though as the Crusaders led off the visiting half of the seventh with a pair of hits to move back in front, 10-9. Alex Voitik, who doubled to lead off the inning, came home to score on Travis Cloney’s RBI single to center.
After allowing the first two hits of the inning, freshman Kinston Carson pitched around some trouble, striking out the side. With the bases loaded, the Tribe rookie got Connor Perry swinging to end the inning.
W&M came up with some two-out magic in the bottom frame in what proved to be the decisive inning. Senior Josh Smith doubled down the left field line, before Holy Cross pitched around Gould to put two on with two outs. Facing a 0-2 count, Large roped his first home run of the year to right center field. The shot gave the Tribe its first lead of the game at 12-10.
After a spotless eighth inning on the bump from Ameer, Holy Cross mounted a comeback attempt in the ninth. The Crusaders put runners on second and third with just one out, but freshman Zach Pearson, who had come on due to injury just a batter earlier, made a nice play at third on a ground ball to get the second out of the inning. Senior Joseph Gaouette induced an easy fly out to left from Perry to close out the Green and Gold’s series sweep.
Making his first career appearance, Carson earned the win, while Gaouette picked up his third save of the season. Holy Cross’s Sean Gustin, who was an All-New England and first team All-Patriot League reliever last season, took the loss, allowing three runs in two innings of work.
Junior Daniel Powers started and went four innings for W&M, allowing five runs and striking out six. Junior Chase Bailey, who made his first career appearance, and sophomore Charlie Fletcher each pitched an inning for the Tribe. Crusader starter Brendan King, who earned the win with six strong innings against Long Beach State last weekend, allowed six runs, four earned, in 4.2 innings of work.
For the third straight game of the series Holy Cross plated a run in the first inning. A one-out walk to Lovullo followed by an Anthony Crittelli single put runners on first and second. After an out, Cam O’Neill blooped a single just inside the right field line, bringing in Lovullo and giving the Crusaders a 1-0 lead.
Holy Cross extended its lead with a home run in the top of the third inning. Critelli launched a one-out homer over the center-field wall, giving the Crusaders a 2-0 advantage.
W&M tied the score with a pair runs in the bottom of the third inning. Gould roped one-out double off the base of the right-center-field wall. Large reached on an error to put runners on the corners. A wild pitch, allowed for Gould to score, and with two outs, Hoehn came through with a two-out double, tying the score 2-2.
The Crusaders’ second home run of the game gave the visitors a 5-2 advantage in the fourth. After Thomas Russo and Cloney each singled, Indeglia emptied the bases with a three-run shot to left-center field.
A pair of RBI hits drew W&M within 5-4 in the bottom of the fourth. Freshman Hunter Smith lined a double to left-center field to drive home Wrighte, who reached on a hit by pitch to start the frame. Smith came around to score on Gould’s sinking line drive single to left field.
The teams traded two-run half innings in the fifth. Holy Cross scored a pair of unearned runs on two-out hits from Cloney, a double to right field, and Indeglia, a single through the right side, to increase its lead to three runs, 7-4.
In the bottom of the inning, W&M loaded the bases with no outs. Wrighte drove home Ameer, who walked to lead off the inning, grounding into the fielder’s choice. On the play, Lovullo threw the double-play relay away allowing Hoehn, who singled to center, to score and close the gap to 7-6.
The Crusaders scored for the fourth-straight inning in the top of the seventh. An errant pickoff throw to first allowed Lovullo to score, before O’Neill followed with a double down the left-field line to plate Critelli and increase the lead to 9-6.
Indeglia led Holy Cross at the plate, going 3-for-4 with two runs scored and four RBI. Critelli was 4-for-6, scoring two runs and driving two in. O’Neill and Cloney each drove in a pair of runs, and Cloney added three hits for the visitors.
The Green and Gold embark on a nine-game road trip over the next two weeks. The swing gets underway at defending national champion Virginia on Tuesday. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.