It had been several years since Spencer Medick had been on a mound in Central Virginia, but the former Woodberry Forest star looked right at home on Saturday night against Virginia.
The senior lefty, who started his college career at Hampden-Sydney before a season of junior college, threw a season-high 129 pitches and kept Elon within striking distance all game long.
Medick allowed nine hits and retired the Cavaliers in order just once, but only gave up two runs on the night. If it wasn’t for a stellar outing from Virginia hurler Scott Silversetin, Medick might have wound up on the winning end of things.
“This guy to my left was awesome,” said Elon coach Mike Kennedy, during the postgame press conference, referring to Medick. “He made pitch after pitch after pitch, and just kept us in there.”
Medick’s complete-game performance allowed Kennedy to save his bullpen for today’s elimination game against UNC Wilmington.
“I was just trying to use my sinker a lot to try and get some groundballs and keep the ball in the park,” Medick said, “and let my defense work, pitch to contact.”
Medick said pitching in Central Virginia again was fun.
“My high school coach was here and a few of my friends were here as well,” he said. “Growing up 25 minutes down the road from here, it’s always cool to come back and play.”
Coming into the game, Medick was 7-6 with a 5.09 ERA. In recent appearances against Appalachian State, Samford and College of Charleston, Medick surrendered, seven, five and six runs, respectively.
Kennedy said Medick was throwing way too many four-seam fastballs during the stretch. Against Virginia, Kennedy says Medick threw his two-seamer roughly 80 percent of the time.
“He got weaker contact by doing that,” Kennedy said. “Bad job of coaching I guess that we didn’t figure out that’s what he was doing earlier [in the season].”
Medick surrendered both runs in the fourth. He gave up an infield single to Nick Howard, who came around to score Virginia’s first run after a double by Kenny Towns. Nate Irving then singled home Towns.
Medick walked three and struck out four on the night.
Molinaro shines in UNCW victory
In UNC Wilmington’s 9-5 win over Army in Saturday’s elimination game, Albemarle High School grad Tyler Molinaro went 2-for-5 with two RBI at the plate and flashed serious defensive skills in right field.
In the fifth inning, Molinaro caught a routine Grant Van Orden fly ball and then whipped an on-the-money toss into third base to nab a tagging Dakari Cooke. In the eighth, Molinaro made a sliding grab of a Jacob Page shot to right.
The 6-foot-3, 215-pounder also stole a base and scored two runs.
Molinaro’s effort helped extend the Seahawks’ season to today’s 1 p.m. elimination game with Elon.
“It’s great,” Molinaro said. “Any time you can stay at home, it’s special. But when you’re playing baseball, it’s even better. I’m enjoying my time here.”
In Friday’s 10-7 loss to Elon, Molinaro went 1-for-5 with an RBI.
A rare ending
After 14 runs, 23 hits and nearly four hours, the Army-UNCW game ended on a rare 2-5-2 triple play.
Seahawks coach Mark Scalf, a veteran of more than two decades in the business, said he’s never seen such a conclusion.
“Probably never will again,” Scalf said.
Daily Progress reporter Andrew Ramspacher contributed to this report.