Bison baseball goes 2-1 in series against North Carolina A&T

Michael Caruso, Staff Writer

The Bison baseball team went 2-1 against the North Carolina A&T Bulldogs in a three-game series on March 2-4, bringing their overall record to 2-7. The Bison were two runs away in the third game from pulling off the sweep, but they were unable to close it out.

In the first game, the Bison took a 5-4 victory. The Orange and Blue were in control defensively as Connor Van Hoose ’18 tallied 11 strikeouts in just six innings on the mound, one shy of his career high. The Bison also saw significant contributions from underclassmen, as Dominic Toso ’21 went 3-for-5 with three RBIs and Brendan Tuttle ’21 closed out the game in relief for Van Hoose. North Carolina A&T gave the Bison a scare down one run in the bottom of the ninth, but after a two-out walk, Tuttle iced the game with a three-pitch strikeout.

The second victory did not come easy for the Orange and Blue, but they were resilient in the late stages of the contest and pulled out the 7-5 win. Evan Madigan ’20 was the centerpiece offensively for the Bison, racking up four hits. Madigan’s most pivotal hit proved to be a ninth-inning double that plated the tying and go-ahead runs. From there, Toso tallied his seventh RBI of the season on a sacrifice pop-fly to bring the score to 7-5. Jack Simpson ’20 came up big for the Bison as well, picking up the win after relieving Jeff Gottesman ’19 on the mound.

In the second game, Madigan led the Bison in batting average at .385. Being at the ninth position in the batting lineup lets him utilize his skills and provide necessary offense to help the Bison score.

“Being that we have such great hitters and a well-rounded team, me being at the bottom of the order allows me to see good pitches and turn it back over to the top,” Madigan said. “We had multiple guys come up big [in game two] and clutch hitting is going to be a huge key to our success as it is to all other teams.”

The third game was a back and forth contest, but ended in a 7-6 loss for the Bison. The Bulldogs had the 2-0 advantage entering the fourth inning, but the Orange and Blue took the lead with three runs in the frame, and Madigan drove in the go-ahead run with an RBI single. The Orange and Blue extended their lead to 4-2 in the fifth, when Miles Moore ’19 doubled to deep left, driving in another run. However, once the eighth inning came around, the Bison gave up five straight runs, which proved too much to overcome. In their best efforts in the ninth inning, JohnPaul Bell ’20 notched a homerun – his fourth in five games – and Madigan recorded an RBI double, but it was not enough to complete the rally.

The Orange and Blue will look to further improve their record as they travel to Florida to take on Villanova and Massachusetts from March 10-14.

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