FAIRFAX, Va. – Virginia Commonwealth University posted its fourth shutout of the season following an 8-0 victory against George Mason University in game one of a three-game set Friday afternoon at Spuhler Field.
VCU improves to 28-20-1 overall, 13-5-1 in the Colonial Athletic Association, while George Mason dropped its fifth straight and falls to 27-17, 10-9 in conference action.
Junior Joe Van Meter went 4-for-5 with a RBI and run to pace the Rams, while senior Matt Leskiw went 2-for-4 and scored a pair of runs.
Freshman southpaw Ryan Farrar recorded his second straight and fourth win of the season after scattering five hits over six innings with four strikeouts and just one walk. Junior Jonathan Watson and senior Robbie Andrews tossed the final three scoreless frames for VCU.
After stranding runners in scoring position in the second and third innings, VCU strung together three consecutive hits to start the fourth and went on to take a 3-0 lead. Van Meter led off the frame with an infield single and sophomore Brent Mikionis put the Rams on the board with a double into left field. Junior John Lenherr then sent a ball up the middle before a RBI groundout by sophomore Paul Nice gave VCU a three-run advantage.
The Rams added another run in the fifth and extended their lead to 4-0. Leskiw collected his second hit of the day, stole second and came home after senior Richard Gonzalez reached on an error by George Mason second baseman Chris Cook.
The Patriots threatened in the bottom of the sixth after placing runners on second and third with two out but Farrar struck out catcher Josh Steinberg and escaped the jam.
VCU never looked back and put the game away with four more runs on three George Mason errors in the seventh and went ahead 8-0. Senior M.L. Morgan, Gonzalez and Van Meter each had RBI singles in the frame.
VCU and George Mason will continue with game two on Saturday at 2 p.m. and conclude the series on Sunday at 1 p.m.