The Hokies (4-1) out-hit the Buccaneers 7-6, but ETSU took advantage of a four-run seventh inning to break a 2-2 tie and improve to 3-0 on the season.
The pivotal top of the seventh included a go-ahead triple by ETSU winning pitcher Bo Reeder (1-0), who threw six innings of six-hit ball before moving to third base and handing the game over to reliever Dustin Plumlee. Plumlee earned his second save of the year by tossing three innings and allowing just one unearned run.
Tech freshman right-hander Clark Labitan (0-1) took the loss after putting two runners on base for junior Ben Rowen, who gave up the triple to Reeder after relieving Labitan.
Junior catcher Anthony Sosnoskie scored two of the Hokies’ three runs in the contest, while freshman Ronnie Shaban went 2-for-4 with two RBIs. Junior outfielders Steve Domecus and Mike Kaminski each recorded a double in the game.
The Hokies picked up a run in the bottom of the second when Sosnoskie, who walked and then advanced to second on a passed ball, came around to score on a double to left by Shaban.
ETSU didn’t answer until the fifth inning, as redshirt freshman Marc Zecchino was solid through the first four, allowing just one hit, one walk and one hit batsman. It was in the fifth that ETSU took a 2-1 lead when Chas Byrne scored on a Jacob Fabry fielder’s choice and Ben Allen scored on a Tech error.
That was all Zecchino gave up in his pitching debut after a year of rehab following Tommy John surgery last February. He came out following the sixth inning after allowing two runs (one earned) on three hits and striking out five.
Tech got back on the board in the bottom of the sixth, as Sosnoskie reached on a single before moving to second on a wild pitch by Reeder. Domecus then ripped a double down the left field line to bring Sosnoskie home for his second run of the game and tie the game at two for the Hokies.
The Buccaneers didn’t wait long to respond, as Reeder helped his own cause with the two-run triple in the top of the seventh. ETSU’s next batter, first baseman Paul Hoilman, then launched a two-run homer to left-center for good measure, and the Buccaneers led 6-2.
Tech’s Austin Wates was able to get one back in the bottom of the eighth when he scored from third on a single by Shaban, but Hoilman plated Fabry in the top of the ninth on a sacrifice fly to set the final score.
The Hokies and Buccaneers are scheduled to meet again at English Field on Wednesday at 3 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech baseball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Baseball).