Captain Robert Wineski had the game-winning single in the bottom of the 10th inning (OAC).
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Harvard baseball team opened the 2013 season, the first under Bill Decker, with a split Friday afternoon. Senior captain Robert Wineski's RBI single with two outs in the bottom of the 10th inning lifted the Harvard baseball team past Bucknell, 2-1,in the Crimson's season opener at Davenport Field. In the nightcap, Harvard outhit No. 19 Virginia in the nightcap, but fell, 3-0.
The Crimson (1-1) was able to take advantage of timely hitting and a pair of strong pitching performances by Matt Doyle and Baron Davis in the opener. Doyle, who started the game, went 5.2 innings and allowed just three hits and one walk while striking out four, and Davis gave up just two walks, two hits and one unearned run in 4.1 innings to pick up the win in the first game under new Joseph J. O'Donnell '67 Head Coach for Harvard Baseball Bill Decker.
Brandon Kregel collected two hits, including a triple, and scored both runs to pace the offense. Wineski added a pair of singles, while Ethan Ferreira and Mike Martin both doubled for a Crimson offense that pounded out nine hits on the afternoon.
Through the first five innings, neither team threatened as both Doyle and Bucknell starting pitcher Bryson Hough were able to shut down the opposing offenses.
In the sixth, Bucknell had its best chance to take the lead as it loaded the bases on a hit by pitch, single and walk with two outs; however, Davis got the Bison's Greg Wasikowski to ground into a fielder's choice to escape the jam without any damage.
Harvard finally broke through in the bottom of the frame. Kregel singled through the left side of the infield to begin the inning before advancing to second on a Nick Saathoff walk. Ferreira followed with his double to right field to plate Kregel and put runners at second and third with no outs. Hough was able to prevent any further damage, getting a ground out, fielder's choice and fly out to leave the two men stranded.
The score would remain tied until the top of the eighth when Bucknell was able to take advantage of a Crimson miscue and manufacture a run. Travis Clark reached on a throwing error to start the inning and advanced to second on a single. He moved to third on sacrifice bunt before a sacrifice fly to center field evened up the score at one.
Both teams went quietly in the ninth to send the game to extras.
Bucknell had an opportunity to take the lead in the 10th inning following Clark's one-out double to the gap in left center, but Doyle was able to work his way out of trouble again with a pop out to third and a fly out to right to set the stage for Wineski's heroics.
In the home half of the inning, Kregel ripped a 1-2 pitch into right field that he turned into a triple to put the winning run 90 feet away with nobody out. Following a strike out, Ferreira was intentionally walked before a ground out to short put men at second and third with two away. Wineski then bounced an 0-2 offering right back up the middle to plate Kregel and win the game.
Riding the momentum of the afternoon victory, Harvard outhit No. 19 Virginia, 7-5, in the tail end of the doubleheader. Three of those hits were off of the Cavaliers' ace Brandon Waddell, who went six innings and struck out seven. DJ Link and Carlton Bailey each had two hits for Harvard, which was doomed by leaving eight runners on base. Bailey also picked up the Crimson's first steal of the year in the second game.
On the mound, Sam Dodge started and went six strong innings, giving up three runs on five hits with four strikeouts. Matt Sanders and Jordan Haviland each kept the Crimson in the game with an inning of unblemished work.
Harvard is expected to throw junior right-hander Peter Kaplan in tomorrow's rematch against Virginia. The Cavaliers will counter with lefty Nathan Kirby at 3 p.m., before the Crimson meets Bucknell again Sunday at 11 a.m.