April 10, 2010
Cullowhee, N.C. - Tyler Kirkpatrick used a perfect day at the plate to help lift Western Carolina past Wofford, 8-2, on Saturday afternoon at Childress Field / Hennon Stadium. The Catamounts (21-8-1, 5-5-1 SoCon) used a solid pitching performance from veteran Matt Benedict to stifle the Terriers (9-21, 3-8) in game two of the weekend series.
WCU opened to a 3-1 lead after four innings before adding five more runs in the fifth and sixth to create a 7-1 advantage. Saturday's victory gave the Catamounts their fifth consecutive victory, while Wofford dropped its third in a row.
Kirkpatrick, a senior from Charlotte, N.C., was just a triple shy of the cycle with a pair of singles, a double and a home run. In the fifth, the third baseman laced a double down the left field line. The sixth inning capped off the perfect day for the senior as he airmailed a three-run bomb to left field. The round-tripper was Kirkpatrick's seventh of the season as he finished 4-for-4 with four RBI and a run scored.
Benedict (4-0) pitched a gem of a contest for the Catamounts, allowing just two runs on eight hits in seven and a third innings. The St. Petersburg, Fla. native fanned three Terriers to remain unblemished on the season.
Russell Robertson's RBI single to left field in the second drove in the first Catamount run as outfielder Cameron Dullnig crossed the plate. Matt Johns added a run in the third from a Tyler White single. Kirkpatrick extended WCU's lead to 3-0 with a RBI single to left.
Wofford's Mac Doyle sliced the WCU lead to 3-1 in the fourth with his 13th home run of the season.
The Catamount defense proved to be stealthy against Wofford base runners. In the third, the Terriers' James Foster was gunned down at home plate from an on-target throw by centerfielder Dylan de Graaf to the catcher Ollie Goulder. Later in the top of the fifth, Josh McKinney was called out at third from a Cameron Dullnig toss to Kirkpatrick at third base.
WCU notched its fourth run of the day as Johns nailed his fifth homer of the year in the fifth inning.
Western put a four spot on the board in the home-half of the sixth. With the bases jammed, White drove in a run and reached on base by virtue of a fielder's choice. The next pitch resulted in the Catamounts' second home run of the day as Kirkpatrick blasted a three-run shot over the left field fence. Shortstop Austin Schultz collected the other multi-hit contest for WCU as he hit 2-for-4 with a run scored.
Wofford added their second run in the eighth, but were subdued by the plethora of freshman Catamount hurlers.
The Terriers' J.D. Osborne (3-1) took his first loss of the season by giving up eight runs, seven earned, on 11 hits in five and two-thirds. David Roney, the catcher for Wofford, collected a 3-for-4 afternoon.
Western Carolina concludes its three game series with the Terriers on Sunday. The first pitch is scheduled for a 2 pm start as lefty Vance Chavis (2-3, 5.11 ERA) will be on the mound for the Catamounts. Live coverage of the game can be accessed online through GameTracker at CatamountSports.com.