Winthrop scored two first-inning runs and five pitchers combined to hold The Citadel to six hits en route to a 3-1 nonconference victory Wednesday at Riley Park.
The win snapped a three-game losing streak for the Eagles and improves Winthrop to 7-8 on the season as it heads into Big South Conference play this weekend with a three-game home series against VMI. The Citadel saw its record fall to 7-9 with the loss. After being swept three times last season by the Bulldogs, Winthrop now owns a 21-17 lead in the all-time series against The Citadel, including a 11-7 record in Charleston.
"The kids played really hard tonight and were competitive," said Winthrop coach Tom Riginos. "It all starts with pitching, which was outstanding tonight. We just kept throwing guys out there. We played all nine innings."
Winthrop took advantage of a first inning error to plate two runs off Bulldog starting pitcher Bryce Hines. Adam Gliebe opened the game by reaching on the error by third baseman Drew DeKerlegand. T.J. Olesczuk singled up the middle. Both runners moved up to third and second base on a passed ball. Following a strike out by Chas Crane, the Eagles loaded the bases on a walk to Eddie Rohan. Gliebe and Olesczuk scored on back-to-back base hits by Brett Thomas and Matt Lobacz. Hines who took the loss to even his record at 1-1, got out of further trouble when Rohan was thrown out going to third and Patrick Gamblin when down on strikes.
The Eagles added their only other run in the sixth inning after Gamblin doubled to left off Bulldog reliever Connor Hitchingham to lead off the frame. Gamblin moved to third on a ground out by Tyler Cook and scored on a single to center by Cam Walters.
The Citadel got its only run in the eighth inning off Eric Ruth, the fourth pitcher used by Riginos. Bulldog catcher Grant Richards doubled to left and moved to third on a single by Nick Orvin. DeKerlegand drove home Richards with a sacrifice fly.
Starting pitcher Dom Patterozzi went two innings in his first stint of the season and allowed two hits. He was relieved by Matteo D'Angelo in the third and he pitched three innings while giving up a hit to get credit for the win. D'Angelo evened his record at 2-2. Robert Lake and Ruth followed him on the mound and then turned things over to Tommy Lawrence in the ninth who earned his third save of the season.
Winthrop and The Citadel are scheduled to meet two more times this season on April 6 at home (a make up of Tuesday night's rained out game) and on May 4 back in Charleston.
Game times for this weekend's home series against VMI are 6 p.m. on Friday; 3 p.m. on Saturday, and 1 p.m. on Sunday.