FAIRFAX, Va., – James Madison took an early lead with six runs in the third and clinched the lopsided win with a five-run ninth to defeat George Mason 11-4 and even the Colonial Athletic Association baseball series at one game apiece on Saturday afternoon at Spuhler Field.
JMU snapped a three-game skid and improved to 12-9 overall, 5-2 in the CAA. GMU fell to 11-11 overall and 4-4 in the CAA.
Junior third baseman Ty McFarland (Bridgewater, Va./Turner Ashby) slid down in the lineup and led JMU by going 2-for-4 with four RBIs and one of three triples in the game for the Dukes. Sophomore shortstop Tyler Duke (Troutville, Va./James River) and sophomore left fielder Chad Carroll (Oakton, Va./Oakton) also tripled and drove in a pair of runs.
Junior Trent Cundiff (Roanoke, Va./Northside) worked an extended relief outing to earn the win, entering the game in the fifth and tossing 3 1/3 innings while allowing no runs on three hits to improve to 1-1. Sophomore Chris Huffman (Fort Defiance, Va./Fort Defiance) pitched the last 1 1/3 innings for his third save.
Left fielder Duncan Satherlie had two of George Mason’s seven hits. Center fielder Tommy Vitaletti smacked a three-run home run. Catcher Ray Toto also hit a solo shot.
Starter John Williams took the loss after allowing all six runs in the third. He worked 2 2/3 innings allowing five hits and walking four.
With two on in the third, JMU got things started with a Conner Brown (Richmond, Va./Godwin) sacrifice fly. The Dukes added an RBI single by McFarland, Carroll’s RBI triple, an RBI single by right fielder Cole McInturff (Centreville, Va./Westfield) and Duke’s two-run triple.
George Mason got Vitaletti’s three-run shot in the third and Toto’s solo shot to lead off the fourth to cut the lead to 6-4.
That score held until the ninth when JMU put the game away. With the bases loaded, Tyler Gregory (Dothan, Ala./Houston Academy) hit an RBI single. McFarland unloaded the bases with a three-run triple to the corner in right and came in to score on Carroll’s sacrifice bunt.
The teams will finish the series on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.