Kirby’s Arm Helps Elon Baseball to Victory

ELON, N.C. – A day after Kyle Brnovich struck out 12 hitters, teammate George Kirby did him one better as the sophomore struck out a career-best 13 batters to help the Elon University baseball team to a 6-3 victory over the Hofstra Pride in game two of a three-game Colonial Athletic Association series on Saturday, April 14.

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Kirby (6-1) picked up the victory after tossing 7.0 innings and allowing one unearned run on five hits. He did not walk a batter. Robbie Welhaf tossed the final inning to earn his team-leading fourth save of the season.

At the plate for Elon (19-16, 6-5 CAA), Ryne Ogren was 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBI, while Zach Evers scored twice and drove in one during a 2-for-4 day at the plate.

For Hofstra (14-13, 4-7 CAA), starter Matt Weissheier (2-4) took the loss. He was charged with three runs on seven hits over 5.0 innings of work.

Steven Foster posted a three-hit day for the Pride, going 3-for-5 with a run scored and one RBI. Vito Friscia also had a multi-hit outing, going 2-for-5 with a run scored.

How It Happened: Elon put up single runs in each of the first two innings thanks to an Ogren RBI single and a Hayden Platt sacrifice fly. The Phoenix extended the lead to 3-0 in the fourth when Josh Broughtonscored from first on an Evers double down the left field line.

Hofstra cut the lead to 3-1 in the top of the sixth. A one-out single from Friscia was followed by a dropped fly ball that left runners on second and third. After a strikeout, Vinnie Costello grounded a single through the left side. Friscia scored from third, but Teddy Cillis was thrown out at the plate by Ty Adcock to end the inning.

The Phoenix seventh began with an Evers bunt single and a Garrett Stonehouse single put two aboard. Ogren then connected on a 1-2 pitch and lined his third home run of the season over the wall in left to give Elon a 6-1 cushion.

It turned out that Elon would need those three runs as Hofstra pushed across a pair of runs in the top of the eighth. A walk and error on a pickoff put Hofstra’s leadoff hitter at third. That was followed by Foster’s infield single that made it 6-2. With two down, Hofstra would end up with the bases loaded thanks to a pair of walks. The third Pride run was forced home on another walk, this one to Rob Weissheier before a ground ball to second ended the threat.

Hofstra would put two men on base in the ninth thanks to a pair of one-out singles before Welhaf closed the door with a fly ball to right and a pop up to third that secured the victory.

Notes: Over the first two games of the series, Elon pitchers have combined to record 32 strikeouts… Ogren’s homer was the first for Elon since April 1, a span of six games… Ogren has now reached safely in 19 consecutive games… Adcock now has two outfield assists on the year, giving the Phoenix five on the season.

On Deck: Elon will play for the series sweep on Sunday morning at 10 a.m. The game time was moved up due to the potential for thunderstorms in the afternoon.