NORFOLK, Va. | The Norfolk State University baseball team rallied for a run in the bottom of the ninth inning and got a timely hit by Cam Mazell in the 10th for the 6-5 walk-off victory, concluding the three-game series with Binghamton on Sunday afternoon at Marty L. Miller Baseball Field.
The rally began in the ninth with two outs as Binghamton turned to closer Jack Collins.
Brandon Cleveland, who went 4-for-5, singled to right and stole second. He advanced to third on a passed ball and came across to score when Chance Pollard reached on an infield single, tying the game at 5.
The Bearcats (3-6) had runners on second and third with two outs in the top of the 10th but Nolan Manzer got out of the jam with a strikeout to end the threat.
In the bottom of the inning, Jacob Council led off the frame with a double to the gap in right. Keshaun Nelson pinch-ran for Council and advanced to third on a groundout by Manny Jackson. With the infield drawn in, Justin Journette struck out, but Mazell ended the game on the next at-bat.
With a 1-0 count, Mazell’s ball found a gap between the shortstop and third, allowing Nelson to score the game-winning run.
Norfolk State (2-8) grabbed a run in the first, but Binghamton tied the game with a run in the second and took a 2-1 lead midway through the fourth inning. However, NSU tied the game at 2 and took a 3-2 advantage with a run in the fifth.
The Bearcats answered with a pair of runs on one hit while taking advantage of an error to grab a 4-3 lead in the top half of the seventh.
Back came the Spartans with a run in the bottom of the seventh, tying the game at 4.
Binghamton seized a one-run lead in the eighth, setting the stage for the Norfolk State comeback.
Norfolk State pounded out 14 hits, committed two errors, and stranded six on base.
Pollard, Council, and Jackson each finished with two hits.
Binghamton recorded nine hits and left seven on base.
Donovan Whitfield started on the rubber for the Spartans, pitching four innings. He gave up two runs (one earned) on four hits, with a pair of strikeouts and two walks. Joe Lafave worked three innings in relief, while Manzer (1-1) earned the victory in three innings.
The Bearcats used five pitchers as starter Ryan Bryggman worked 3.1 innings, giving up two runs on five hits with five strikeouts. John Lumpinski, Tommy Synder, Collins, and Justin Rosner worked in relief.
The Spartans return to action for their first road game of the season on Tuesday at Old Dominion. First Pitch against the Monarchs is set for 3 p.m. from Bud Metheny Baseball Stadium.
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