NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Seven innings were not enough for Vanderbilt to wrap up its fall season Friday at Hawkins Field, as the Black and Gold Series went into extra frames to determine offseason bragging rights.
After Black pulled out a 4-3 victory to start the evening and knot the series at 1-1, Gold posted a 4-0 win in a two-inning, winner-take-all finale. Will Duff, CJ Rodriguez, Dominic Keegan and Justyn Henry-Malloy each recorded an RBI in the deciding second inning to secure the series.
Luke Murphy and Chance Huff each fanned a pair and kept Black hitless in the final two stanzas to push Gold to victory.
In Friday’s opening game, Maxwell Romero Jr. belted a one-out homer in the bottom of the second. Troy Laneve added a single and gave Black a 2-0 cushion behind Harrison Ray’s two-out, RBI-triple to left.
Carter Young put Gold on the board with a solo shot in the fifth, with Black answering in the bottom half to build a 3-1 lead.
Henry-Malloy singled home a run in the sixth and Tyler McKenzie’s heads-up running yielded an unearned run that allowed Gold to knot things at 3-3 in the seventh.
Laneve’s walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh sealed Black’s 4-3 triumph.
Jack Leiter went 3.0 innings for Black and fanned six while only allowing one hit. His biggest threat came when Gold had the bases loaded in the opening half, but Leiter worked his way out of the two-out jam.
Vanderbilt will begin its 2020 season Feb. 14 at the MLB4 Tournament in Scottsdale, Arizona. The home opener against South Alabama is set for Feb. 18.