West Virginia Rips Pats

Steve Morrison pitched eight strong innings in his first start of the season and Jedd Gyorko and Justin Parks added three hits apiece to lead the West Virginia baseball to a 4-1 victory over George Mason today at Watson Stadium in the Baseball at the Beach Tournament.

Morrison (1-0) earned the win after giving up one run on five hits while striking out 10. The right-hander threw 129 pitches and retired 16 of his final 17 batters to cap his strong performance. The sophomore also gave up only one extra base hit throughout the game as he stifled the Patriot offense. The Mountaineers (5-3) recorded 12 hits and were paced by multiple-hit games from Gyorko, Parks and shortstop Tyler Kuhn. WVU totaled double-digit figures in hits for the fourth time this season.

The Patriots (1-5) struck first after scoring the game's first run in the second inning. After striking out the first two batters, Morrison gave up a double down the left field line to Ryan Uphouse. Leadoff man Spencer Wiggins followed with an RBI single to right center to give George Mason an early 1-0 lead. WVU responded in the bottom of the inning when right fielder Parks led off with a single. Parks advanced on Kuhn's base hit, then scored on a two-out RBI single by hot-hitting freshman Gyorko to tie the game.

The Mountaineers took the lead in the third after garnering three hits in the inning. Austin Markel singled to right field, and Jordon Yost followed with another single to center to put WVU in scoring position. Parks took advantage with a run-scoring single to make it 2-1. In the fifth inning WVU built a 4-1 lead after adding three more hits. A leadoff walk by Yost and another base hit by Parks allowed for a run-scoring single to left by Dan Dibartolomeo. After Kuhn singled to load the bases, Gyorko added an RBI sacrifice fly that scored Parks.

Left-hander Mike Modica (0-2) took the loss for the Patriots after giving up four runs on 11 hits while throwing 84 pitches in only 4.1 innings of work. WVU finished off the game when pitcher Chris Enourato recorded his first save of the season after striking out Uphouse to give the Mountaineers their fifth win. They returns to action for the home opener against Duquesne on Tuesday, March 4, at Hawley Field. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.

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