Guided by a tremendous outing from starter RHP Luis Escobar and early scoring from the Black Bears’ offense, West Virginia defeated Williamsport, 6-2 on Wednesday night from Monongalia County Ballpark. Escobar improved to 5-4, striking out eight hitters through six scoreless innings while allowing just three hits.

West Virginia’s offense got rolling early in the first inning as an RBI single from 3B Will Craig and a three-run home run off the bat of 1B Albert Baur gave the Black Bears a 4-0 lead. Just one inning later, the Black Bears would extend their advantage to 5-0 on 2B Kevin Mahala’s RBI sacrifice fly.

In the sixth inning, West Virginia added another run as a wild pitch allowed LF Matt Diorio, who walked, to score, putting the Black Bears ahead, 6-0. Reliever RHP Billy Roth entered for Escobar in the seventh and allowed two earned runs over two innings.

The Crosscutters found a rhythm offensively in the eighth as a two RBI double off the left field wall from C Gregori Rivero cut Williamsport’s deficit to 6-2. For the final frame, Black Bears’ reliever RHP Luis Paula came into the game and threw the ninth inning scoreless.

Craig and Baur paced the Black Bears’ offense with a pair of hits each as both teams recorded seven hits in the contest. For the Crosscutters, 2B Evan Rogers and 1B Darick Hall both went 2-for-3 to lead the attack while starter RHP Adonis Medina dropped to 4-3, surrendering five earned runs through five innings on five hits.

The Black Bears (30-34) and Crosscutters (33-30) will play the series rubber match tomorrow night at 7:05 p.m. from Monongalia County Ballpark on First Responders Night.

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Game summary provided by West Virginia Black Bears.