ST. LOUIS — No. 4 George Washington scored six times in the first two innings, and then turned back a ninth-inning Saint Louis rally to beat the Billikens 6-4 Wednesday in the first round of the 2017 Atlantic 10 Baseball Championship at Billiken Sports Center.
The Colonials (31-25) advance to the second round to face top-seeded VCU Thursday at 1:30 pm CT. No. 5 SLU (32-21) falls into the consolation bracket and is facing No. 3 St. Bonaventure in an elimination game Wednesday night.
Joey Bartosic hit a leadoff home run in the bottom of the first to spark the GW offense. A five-run second followed for the Colonials, starting with Nate Fassnacht stealing home. Mark Osis followed up by scoring on a fielding error. Andrew Selby then crushed a three-run homer to give GW a 6-0 lead. Four GW players had two hits for the Colonials, with Selby leading the way with three RBI.
A leadoff home run by James Morisano, who was 3-for-4, in the seventh got one of the runs back for the Billikens. SLU then tried to rally in the bottom of the ninth when Alex King hit a two-out homer with two runners on to cut the GW lead down to two, but a subsequent strikeout ended the rally. King's three RBI were a team high.
Brady Renner (8-5) allowed eight hits and three runs with six strikeouts and no walks in eight innings of work to earn the win for George Washington. Miller Hogan (8-3) took the loss, allowing six runs on seven hits in 1 2/3 innings.