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After Unexpected Day Off, Baseball Returns to Action Against George Washington on Wednesday
Junior Rob McCabe
BALTIMORE – After receiving an unexpected day off on Tuesday due to inclement weather earlier in the week, the UMBC baseball team returns to action with a non-conference game against George Washington on Wednesday afternoon at Barcroft Park. First pitch in Arlington, Va. between the Retrievers and Colonials is set for 3:00 p.m.
Coming off of a series loss to league foe Albany, UMBC (5-9, 3-3 America East) will send sophomore Kevin Ladner (Succasunna, N.J./Roxbury) to the mound to make his first start of the season. After starting two games last year, Ladner (1-0) has made seven appearances out of the bullpen this spring, working a total of 11.2 innings for a 1.54 ERA.
George Washington (7-15, 3-0 Atlantic 10), whom takes on UMES on Tuesday afternoon in Princess Anne, Md., has not announced a starter for Wednesday’s contest.
The Retrievers and Colonials met twice last season with GW taking both games, first in Baltimore, 6-4, and then in Northern Virginia, 8-1. With the wins, the Colonials took a 28-14 advantage in the all-time series which dates back to 1984. George Washington has won 16 of the past 18 contests as the Retrievers won on the road in 2008, 14-4, and at home in 2011, 6-3.
This past weekend, UMBC won the opening game of a three-game set against Albany, but fell in the next two to drop the series. With the score tied at 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh of game one, freshman Kevin Lachance (Clifton, Va./Centreville) lifted a deep fly ball to centerfield, bringing home classmate Jesse Smith (Mechanicsville, Va./Lee-Davis) with the winning run as the Retrievers notched their first walk-off win of the season. Junior Mac Gill (Bethesda, Md./Walter Johnson) threw a complete game to earn the win and move to 2-0 on the season.
Junior Brandon Coluccio (Freehold, N.J./Freehold Towsnhip/Brookdale CC) leads the Retrievers at the plate with a .321 average (9-for-28) in 11 games played this season. Classmate Rob McCabe (Philadelphia, Pa./St. Joseph’s Prep) has been steady for UMBC with a .353 on-base percentage and gaining a team-best 15 total bases.
Out of the bullpen, junior John Cohn (Scottsdale, Ariz./Notre Dame Prep) has nearly equaled Ladner’s success with a 2.63 ERA in six appearances over 13.2 innings. In his past two outings, Cohn has held the opponent scoreless in 6.2 innings of work. A pair of freshmen have also provided stability as Mike Gomez (Nutley, N.J./Don Bosco Prep) has notched three saves and Cam Maxey (Mechanicsville, Va./Atlee) help opponents to just three runs in his past eight innings on the hill.
George Washington enters mid-week play on the heels of a three-game sweep of A-10 rival UMass at Barcroft Park. The Colonials outscored the Minutemen 12-2 over the course of the series, limiting them to a single run in each of the first two contests before taking the finale 1-0.
For the year, GW has recorded a team-ERA of 4.12 and each of its weekend starters are currently yielding less than four runs per nine innings. Out of the pen, Craig Lejeuene has made eight appearances, in addition to one start, registering a 2.12 ERA and posting three saves. The junior right-hander has struck out 17 batters while giving away only four free passes.
At the plate, Ryan Hickey leads a lineup that does not have a single batter hitting over .300 for the season. Hickey currently holds a .274 average (17-for-62) with four doubles and seven RBI. While only hitting .194 (13-for-67), Derek Brown has hit six two-baggers and driven in a team-best 11 runs.
- George Washington won the first ever meeting between the two schools 8-0 in 1984.
- UMBC last won at GW on Apr. 1, 2008.
- The Retrievers have committed just one error or less in eight games this season.
- UMBC is 0-1 vs. schools from Washington, D.C. though the 7-4 loss to Georgetown was played at Shirley Povich Field in Bethesda, Md.
- With three strike outs against Albany on Sunday, the UMBC pitching staff extended its streak to 80 straight games with at least one K.
- After going a combined 4-for-8 against George Washington in the two games last year, senior Jason Allinder (Snow Hill, Md./Snow Hill/Chesapeake CC) is hitting .538 (7-for-13) in four career games against the Colonials.