RICHMOND, Va. – After sitting through a one hour rain delay, the VCU Baseball team surrendered four runs in the top of the first inning in its Friday matchup with the visiting Seahawks of UNCW. The early deficit would come back to plague the Rams in the contest, as VCU found itself on the wrong end of a 9-6 setback to UNCW on Friday night at The Diamond.
UNCW improves to 11-10 overall and 6-1 in the CAA, while VCU drops to 11-11 and 2-5 in CAA play.
"Obviously they came out ready to roll and Kyle wasn't ready and UNCW took advantage," said VCU head coach Paul Keyes. "I thought we did a good job of settling in and getting the momentum back in our favor, but the game came down to a couple of plays in the eighth inning. It was a good game and it's a shame we couldn't come away with the plays when we needed them, both in the field and at the plate."
The Seahawks jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the top of the first, manufacturing four runs off VCU starter Kyle Haynes.
After remaining hitless for the first three innings, the Rams strung together three hits in the bottom of the fourth and pushed across a pair of runs. Sophomore outfielder Bill Cullen got things going with a leadoff triple, his seventh of the season. Cullen came home to score on a sacrifice fly by freshman infielder Vimael Machin. Sophomore infielder Joey Cujas followed that up with an infield single and advanced to second on a throwing error on the play. Cujas touched home after a two-out single by sophomore Chris Ayers to cut the lead to 4-2.
The Rams tied the score at 4-4 after recording a pair of runs in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Black & Gold got things going with back-to-back one-out singles by Cujas and senior catcher Taylor Perkins. The two would advance one base each on a wild pitch, before Cujas came around to score on a passed ball. Ayers plated Perkins with a double into right center.
The Seahawks would retake the lead in the eighth inning, tallying three runs in the frame for a 7-4 lead.
VCU managed to score two runs in the bottom of the eight to cut the lead to one, but UNCW came back with two runs in the top of the ninth to bring the score to its final at 9-6.
The Rams and Seahawks will meet on Saturday for the second game of the series, with first pitch scheduled for 3 p.m. at The Diamond.