The Mountaineers (0-2) scored two runs on seven hits with one error, while the 49ers (2-0) scored 13 runs on 15 hits with no errors. Sophomore right fielder Darius Hill led the Mountaineers with two hits and drove in both WVU runs. It was his 28th multi-hit game of his career and 11th multi-RBI game of his career.
Sophomore right-handed starter Michael Grove allowed four runs on six hits. He struck out four and walked two and suffered his first loss of the year. Josh Maciejewski earned the win for Charlotte. He pitched 5.2 innings and allowed one run on three hits with two strikeouts and five walks.
Nine Mountaineers made their career debuts on Saturday.
After Charlotte took a 1-0 lead on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the second, the Mountaineers answered right back to tie the game at 1-1 in the top of the third. It began with two outs, when freshman center fielder Brandon White doubled for his first career hit. After junior left fielder Kyle Davis walked, Hill doubled home White.
A strike-him-out, throw-him-out double play and a pickoff at first helped Grove get out of the bottom of the third, and then the Mountaineers had a chance to take the lead in the fourth. However, a lead-off walk and double was followed by a strikeout and a double play to end the WVU scoring threat.
The 49ers answered in the bottom of the fourth with three runs to take a 4-1 lead. Jackson Mims led off with a home run and a walk and back-to-back singles scored the second run. The final run of the inning came on a sacrifice fly.
Sophomore right-hander Braden Zarbnisky relieved Grove to start the fifth and pitched a scoreless frame. The Mountaineers followed in the top of the sixth with back-to-back, two-out walks, but reliever Brandon Casas came in and got the final out of the inning.
Charlotte added four runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to take an 8-1 lead. The four-run, three-hit inning was capped by a two-run home run by Logan Sherer.
West Virginia added a run in the top of the seventh to cut the deficit to 8-2. A single and walk was followed by a flyout. With two outs and a runner on third, Hill singled home freshman second baseman TJ Lake.
The Niners got the run back in the bottom of the inning, with five runs. With two outs, a two-run double was followed by a run-scoring single and a two-run home run. Freshman right-hander Ryan McDonald came in and got a strikeout to end the inning in his first career appearance.
Two Mountaineer runners reached in the eighth inning, including freshman pinch-hitter Isaiah Kearns with his first career hit, but a double play ended the threat.
The three-game set concludes Sunday at 1 p.m. WVU will start right-hander Connor Dotson in an attempt to salvage a game in the series.
NOTES: WVU falls to 0-2 on the season and 1-4 all-time against Charlotte … Starter Michael Grove pitched four innings and allowed four runs on six hits while striking out four and walking two … Playing in his first career game and starting in center field, Brandon White doubled in the third inning for his first career hit … Darius Hill drove in White for his first RBI of the season and added another RBI in the seventh inning … Hill had two hits and two RBI on the day … In his first career at-bat, Isaiah Kearns singled in the eighth inning for his first career hit.