This post was written by Hatchet reporter Joshua Solomon.
Freshman Matthieu Robért broke into a slow trot in after being throw out by half a step at first, watching Richmond celebrate its come-from-behind 8-7 victory on GW’s home field.
Robért had stepped to the plate with the bases loaded, two outs, in the bottom of the ninth and with his team down one run. But his final out marked the last of the Spiders’ three-game weekend sweep of the Colonials.
GW (11-20, 5-3) had a lead in the final game of the series Sunday, but could not capitalize on opportunities at the plate and minimize mental mistakes en route to its loss. That final defeat followed an ugly 10-2 loss on Friday, one which prompted head coach Gregg Ritchie to talk to his team.
“We had a big discussion about it, about what do you stand for and [if] that game is going to define us,” Ritchie said. “And I will say this, they came out and played really hard baseball the next two days and [that] was much more like what we want to see.”
With GW down 3-0 in the fourth inning Sunday, junior Brookes Townsend continued his hot hitting. Towsend, who leads the team in batting average, recorded his fifth straight multi-hit game. His single started a series of hits for the Colonials that added five runs, culminating in senior Justin Albright’s line drive with two outs to center field to drive in the fifth run of the inning courtesy of a big headfirst slide under the tag.
But junior Aaron Weisberg could not work his way out of the sixth, ending his performance that day with five and a third innings, nine hits, five runs and four earned. He exited after allowing a Spiders RBI double that saw Richmond pull within two. Senior Kenny O’Brien came in relief, stopping the damage at two runs but also throwing away a potential double play ball in the eighth. Closer senior Craig LeJeune ran into his own trouble in the ninth, walking multiple batters to aid the Spiders in retaking the lead.
Down one in the bottom of the ninth, Townsend sliced a ball down the right field line to create a first and third one-out scenario, raising GW’s comeback hopes.
“Coach gave us the approach, got to a get good pitch out over the plate. Take away the inner half, let those go. Find something out over the plate and drive it,” Townsend said. “[I] passed the torch onto the next guy.”
A swinging bunt was hit in front of the catcher, and the runner from third broke home- but to only get caught and tagged for the second out. GW worked a bases-loaded situation but Robért grounded out to shortstop to end the game.
GW’s first game against Richmond Friday ended 10-2, in a game that Ritchie called “absolutely putrid.” The Colonials headed into the bottom of the seventh down 4-1 and squeezed out one run on a fielder’s choice by senior Matthew Murakami. But they stranded three as a bases-loaded opportunity was squandered.
Saturday, freshman Max Kaplow continued on his strong rookie season with six innings of shutout ball with three hits and five strikeouts. Unfortunately Richmond’s starter bested his six shutout innings with six and two thirds of one-run ball. The Spiders quickly jumped on the board when Kaplow exited with two runs in the top of the seventh. Freshman Eric Kalman singled in Townsend in the bottom half for the Colonials’ only run in the 3-1 loss.
Still, Ritchie was happy with his team’s performance in the second game, looking at their play as a response to the frustrating game one.
“We came back, and they did pull their bootstraps up a little and put their big boy pants on a little bit and they played better baseball,” Ritchie said.