CULLOWHEE, N.C.—The Western Carolina baseball team completed a sweep of its three-game Southern Conference series with Samford with a 5-2 win over the Bulldogs Sunday afternoon at Hennon Stadium.
With the loss, Samford falls to 19-18 overall and 8-10 in Southern Conference play. Western Carolina improves to 22-16 overall and 12-6 in league play.
In Sunday’s game, Samford was led at the plate by Christiaan Durdaller, going 2-for-4 with an RBI. C.K. Irby went 2-for-5 at the plate, while Tommy Corbin drove in a run in a 1-for-4 performance.
Cole Limbaugh (3-2) took the loss on the mound for Samford. Limbaugh pitched 4.2 innings, allowing three runs on nine hits. Andres Gracia, Arthur Strauss and Phillip Ervin also pitched in the game for Samford.
Western Carolina was led at the plate by Julian Ridings, going 3-for-5 with a home run and an RBI. Jacob Hoyle went 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI. Jordan Smith (2-3) pitched 8.0 innings, allowing two runs on eight hits and striking out seven batters to earn the win. Preston Hatcher pitched the final inning to earn his eighth save of the season.
Samford struck first in the game, plating a run in the top of the second inning. Damon Waller singled to lead off the inning. Waller later scored on a single up the middle by Durdaller to give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead.
Western Carolina took the lead for good, plating three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Ridings led the inning off with a home run to right-center field to tie the score at 1-1. With one out in the inning, Dykota Spiess singled to drive in Hoyle for the go-ahead run. Cody Jones later singled to drive in Spiess to make the score 3-1.
Samford came back with one run in the top of the eighth inning to cut the Western Carolina lead to 3-2. Ervin singled to lead off the inning. Ervin advanced to second base on a hit-by-pitch and third base on a wild pitch. Ervin then scored on a single by Corbin to bring Samford to within one run.
Western Carolina added two runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to push its lead to 5-2. Tyler White singled to drive in Jones, and Hoyle singled to drive in Ridings for a three-run Catamount lead.