Liberty Plates Lone Run in the 16th to Top ODU, 1-0
NORFOLK, Va. - Dylan Allen drew a bases loaded walk to score Danny Grauer in the top of the 16th as Liberty defeated Old Dominion University baseball 1-0 in 16 innings Wednesday evening at the Bud Metheny Baseball Complex.
The 16 inning contest lasted just over four hours and is the third longest in ODU history. ODU played a 17 inning game at Rice earlier in the year, while the longest in ODU history was an 18 inning affair in 2006 at Towson.
Liberty (15-7), who left 15 runners on base, started a two-out rally in the 16th with a Grauer bloop double down the left field line. Dalton Britt was walked intentionally while Ashton Perritt followed with an infield single to load the bases. On a full count, Allen took a pitch low from ODU reliever Brett Harris to allow Grauer to score.
ODU (12-9) did not go quitely in the bottom half of the inning. Taylor Ostrich started off the inning with a single and moved to second on a hit by Michael Perez to put runners on first and second with one out, but Blake Fulghum retired the final two batters to close out the LU win.
The Flames put runners on first and second in the ninth with nobody out, but Brad Gero forced a double play and followed with the third out to get out of that jam, while the Monarchs escaped the 12th and the 13th, stranding a pair of Liberty runners in each inning.
ODU's best chance to put a run on the board came in the 15th inning. Nick Walker led off the inning with a single and moved to second on a wild pitch. Connor Myers moved him to third while P.J. Higgins was intentionally walker. Flames pitcher Shawn Clowers was able to get the next two batters to strike out and fly out to end the threat.
Ryan Yarbrough pitched the first five innings for the Monarchs, allowing just two hits and striking out two. Eight Monarchs relievers followed to combine for 10 shutout innings. Victor Diaz pitched 3.1 innings while striking out five and allowing just one hit.
Jared Lyons started for Liberty and went nine innings, allowing just four hits, while Clowers earned the win going six innings giving up two hits and striking out eight.
ODU is back in action on Friday when they travel to Louisiana Tech for a Conference USA weekend series.