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AN INDEPENDENT STUDENT NEWSPAPER SERVING THE GW COMMUNITY SINCE 1904

The GW Hatchet

Serving the GW Community since 1904

The GW Hatchet

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Crime log: Subject barred after shoplifting at bookstore
By Max Porter, Contributing News Editor • February 26, 2024

Baseball makes best start since 2008 with weekend sweep of Niagara

Junior Bobby LeWarne throws a pitch during GWs win on Friday over Niagara. LeWarne gave up six runs in six plus innings pitched. Zach Montellaro | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Junior Bobby LeWarne throws a pitch during GW’s win on Friday over Niagara. LeWarne gave up six runs in six plus innings pitched. Zach Montellaro | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Junior Bobby LeWarne throws a pitch during GW's win on Friday over Niagara. LeWarne gave up six runs in six plus innings pitched. Zach Montellaro | Hatchet Staff Photographer
Junior Bobby LeWarne throws a pitch during GW’s win on Friday over Niagara. LeWarne gave up six runs in six plus innings pitched. Zach Montellaro | Hatchet Staff Photographer

This post was written by Hatchet staff writer Josh Solomon.

Maybe it’s the beards, but the baseball team is off to its best start since 2008.

In an effort to change the culture and grow a little good luck for the team, head coach Gregg Ritchie’s no-shave policy seems it will stay in effect for a while. In a weather-shortened weekend series, GW won a pair of games at home against Niagara to improve to 4-1 on the season.

Neither Friday nor Saturday’s win came easy, though, and the Colonials needed all nine to decide both against a feisty Purple Eagles squad.

GW fell behind in the first inning Friday with junior Bobby LeWarne on the mound. It was a rocky start for the Iowa native, finding himself constantly behind batters in a day where the strike zone was unforgiving. In the inning, he hit back-to-back batters and gave up a shot to the left field wall. With the infield in, LeWarne found a groove with his change up, allowing him to retire the next two hitters, limiting the scoring to one run.

“Bobby, he did battle,” Ritchie said after Friday’s game. “He gave us enough. The offense really is what kept Bobby in the game.”

GW came back and tacked on their own run in the bottom of the first. Niagara came back with three more, with the third run scoring on an error by the sophomore shortstop Kevin Mahala. The Colonials matched again, scoring three of their own runs, courtesy of a triple to left center from sophomore Andrew Selby and a base hit up the middle from sophomore Eli Kashi that drove in the third run of the inning.

Selby had a big game with two hits, a triple and a double, drove in two runs and scored four runs.

Every player in the starting lineup recorded at least one hit. But to make it to the party, Kashi had to rework his swing with the coaching staff, quieting his approach at the plate and adopting a wider stance. Heading into the game, he was 2-8 at the plate, with the two hits coming in the previous game against Georgetown.

“You can’t make light of what Kashi did,” Ritchie said. “After the first game, we basically did an absolute overhaul of his mechanical setup, hands, everything. He took it into the next game and he’s been good ever since.”

Following the three runs scored in the second for GW, LeWarne stopped the bleeding until he left the game in the seventh. Two of his runners left on base would score, and he finished with six plus innings, six runs, five earned, six hits and seven strikeouts, throwing 92 pitches.

The Colonials tagged the Purple Eagles for another three runs in the third. But they had plenty more in their bats on the day. After Niagara closed within one run in the seventh, 8-7, GW would then add four more runs in consecutive innings, to eventually win 16-7, with 16 total hits.

“We came back,” Ritchie said. “When they answered on us, the big thing is we answered. We answered in the first and then we they came back strong right at the end, we answered big. I was really happy to see the guys do that.”

Saturday told a similar storyline: the Purple Eagles scored first, but GW bounced back in multiple innings.

Niagara scored the first two runs of the game in the fourth inning off of starting pitcher Jordan Sheinkop, knocking him out of the game after 60 pitches. But the bullpen would go onto piece the win together, yielding three runs on eight hits. Sophomore Eddie Muhl picked up his second save of the season, going two innings to close it out.

GW won the game in the seventh, again, scoring four runs to take a permanent lead. Senior Brookes Townsend came away with the pivotal hit, singling in two runs. The elder statesmen on the team went 3-4 with three RBI and one run scored.

In the process, sophomore Joey Bartosic extended his school-record hitting streak, dating back to last year, to 19 games.

The Colonials will pick up play with two weekday games this week, one against UMES Tuesday and the other against Georgetown Wednesday.

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