UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND, Va. - The University of Richmond Spiders baseball team staged a ninth-inning comeback on Friday afternoon, but it wouldn't be enough as the visiting Dayton Flyers held on to defeat Richmond, 5-3, at Pitt Field. With the setback, the Spiders fall to 20-18 on the season overall and to 7-6 in Atlantic 10 conference play. With the victory, Dayton improves to 20-23 on the season and to 9-4 in league play.
Despite taking the loss, junior pitcher Jacob Mayers (6-2) had a nice day for Richmond, tossing eight innings. Mayers allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits while striking out six.
At the plate, redshirt junior Bret Williams drove in all three Spider run with a pinch-hit, three-run home run in the ninth. Sophomore Adam Forrer had two hits on the afternoon, while senior Phil Ruzbarsky had a double and also scored a run.
After a scoreless first inning, the Flyers took the early lead in the second, scoring one unearned run. Dayton then added to its lead in the top of the third, pushing across two more runs to take a 3-0 advantage over the host Spiders.
Early in the game, the double-play ball undid Richmond. In both the first and fifth innings, potential Spider rallies were cut short thanks to a pair of double plays pulled off by Dayton.
In the top of the ninth, the Flyers were able to add to their cushion over Richmond, scoring two more runs that would prove to be the difference in the ball game.
Trailing 5-0, the Spiders were down to their final out with a man on first base in the bottom of the ninth. With a full count, however, Ruzbarsky kept hope alive with a double down the left-field line that put runners on second and third for the pinch hitter Williams. After falling behind, 1-2, Williams battled back to run the count full, 3-2. On the pitch, Williams blasted his first homer of the season over the fence in right, cutting the Dayton lead to just two.
After a single to left-center field off the bat of Forrer, the tying run came to the plate in the person of Ryan Mallory. Despite having one hit already on the day, Mallory was unable to keep the rally going and struck out, securing the 5-3 win for the Flyers.
The Richmond Spiders baseball team will continue its Atlantic 10 series with the Dayton Flyers on Saturday afternoon at Pitt Field. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.