Written by Staff Reports
Saturday, 01 June 2013 11:11
Elon used a five-run, two-out rally in the top of the sixth inning to highlight a 10-7 victory over UNCW in game two of the 2013 NCAA Charlottesville Regional before 3,243 fans at Virginia's Davenport Field.
Elon (33-28) ran its winning streak to a season-long six games and will face sixth-ranked Virginia (48-10) at 6 p.m. on Saturday. The Phoenix has had to rally to win in each of its wins during the streak. UNCW (37-22) will meet Army (29-22) at 1 p.m. on Saturday in an elimination contest.
Elon pounded out 10 hits and was led by the efforts of Antonio Alvarez, who went 2-for-3 with three runs scored and four RBIs. Wil Leathers added a pinch-hit two-run homer and Chris Bresnahan was 2-for-4 with two RBIs and one run scored for the Maroon and Gold.
Andrew MacDonald (5-1) earned the win in relief of starter Kyle Webb. MacDonald tossed 3 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing two hits. The loss went to Mat Batts (9-4). The 2013 CAA Pitcher of the Year allowed eight runs (seven earned) on eight hits in six innings.
The Phoenix was the first to strike as Alex Swim began the second with a triple to left-center and scored when Alvarez laced a double down the right-field line. With Alvarez on third after a sacrifice bunt, Danny Lynch hit a soft chopper toward third. On the throw to retire Lynch, Alvarez scored to give Elon a 2-0 lead.
UNCW came right back in the bottom of the inning as Ryan LaGrange and Corey Dick got things going with back-to-back singles. A sac bunt moved both runners up before Webb fanned Drew Farber for out No. 2 to bring Andy Austin to the plate. Austin lined a 2-2 pitch into right-center for a double to knot the game at 2. After a walk put two runners aboard, Terence Connelly lined a single to left that put the Seahawks on top, 3-2.
The Seahawks' lead increased to 4-2 with two down in the last of the fifth as an Elon error allowed a run to score. A ground-rule double then drove home another to make it a 5-2 contest.
Elon's bats picked up in the sixth as Quinn Bower and Niko Fraser began the frame with back-to-back singles. After the next two hitters were retired, Swim drew a walk to load the bases for Alvarez, who ripped a double down the left-field line that scored all three runners to tie the game at 5. Leathers then put the Maroon and Gold back on top as he crushed the first pitch he saw from Batts into the seats in left for a two-run homer, his third of the year. It was the first pinch-hit home run for Elon since April 3, 2011.
UNCW put together another two-out rally in the sixth. With a runner on second, Connelly singled to center to score one. He later scored on a Tyler Molinaro single to even the contest back up at 7. The back-and-forth battle continued into the seventh as a Ryan Kinsella ground out plated Bresnahan to give Elon an 8-7 lead.
The Phoenix extended its lead in the eighth thanks to a two-run single to right-center from Bresnahan that drove home both Alvarez and Leathers to make it a 10-7 Elon lead.