Great Relief Pitching Leads North Carolina A&T to Road Win Over GWU

Recovering from an injury while throwing the baseball super-fast is the best way to return to form. Sophomore right-hander pitcher Xavier Meachem, rehabbing since the offseason from an arm injury, has looked outstanding in the limited action he has had thus far this season, including Tuesday evening at Gardner-Webb.

Meachem earned his second save of the season by pitching two scoreless and hitless innings to lead the North Carolina A&T baseball team to a 3-2 win over the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs at Bill Masters Field. The Aggies have won three of four to improve to 6-6. Gardner-Webb is also 6-6.

Reports from Gardner-Webb stated Meachem’s fastball measured at 97 miles per hour occasionally. Meachem also walked only one batter while striking out six. In 3.2 innings pitched this season, he has not given up a run and has surrendered one with six strikeouts and only one walk. Before Meachem stepped on the mound, the Aggies built a 3-0 lead.

Two runs came in the visitor’s third as junior TJ Ash earned a one-out walk. He moved to third on an error created by a failed pick-off play by GWU catcher Humberto Torres. Sophomore Sabin Roane made the Bulldogs pay for the errant throw by doubling down the left field line to score Ash.

Roane moved to third on a groundout, leading to an infield RBI single by junior Cort Maynard to give the Aggies a 2-0 lead. A groundout ended the Aggies threat in the third before the Aggies added another run in the fifth. Roane was again in the middle of the Aggies scoring threat.

He singled to left field, followed by a single through the right side by Shemar Dalton. The Bulldogs earned their second out of the inning when Maynard struck out, but sophomore Canyon Brown hit a two-out RBI single to left to score Roane. Roane went 3-for-4 on the day with two runs scored and an RBI. Roane has made two straight starts for the Aggies, and he is a combined 5-for-8 (.625) in those games.

Also, before Meachem entered the game, the Aggies other pitchers were excellent as well. RHP Luke Brown started for A&T and pitched two scoreless innings, giving up three hits, one walk and striking out one. RHP Ethan Snyder also had a fantastic outing, going four innings, giving up one hit, no walks and striking out five.

GWU did get on the board in the seventh inning. With the bases loaded, A&T right-hand reliever Jake Delisi gave up an infield single to Nate Anderson to score Alec Burns, who walked. However, first baseman Anthony Hennings made an error on the play, allowing Torres, who reached on a hit by pitch, to score. Torres’ run cut the Aggies lead to 3-2.

But the Aggies turned to Meachem in the eighth to slow down the Bulldogs momentum. He walked the first batter he faced before retiring the next six to earn the save. Snyder (1-0) earned the win, and LHP Reid Bertram (0-2) received the losing decision.

Tre Williams had two hits for the Aggies, and Bo Rusher III led GWU by going 2-for-2 with a walk. The Aggies start Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) play on Friday at 4 p.m. as they open a three-game series against the Towson Tigers at War Memorial Stadium.

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