Daily Staff Report
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. -- Shenandoah University will have two chances to make a return trip to the NCAA Division III Baseball National Championships after downing Mary Washington 10-5 on Friday in the winner's bracket final of the South Regional.
Shenandoah (37-8) will face Salisbury in the tournament championship today at 11 a.m. Should the Hornets lose that game, the "if-necessary" contest would be played at 2:30 p.m.
As in its second game of the tournament, Shenandoah rallied from an early deficit on Friday afternoon.
Mary Washington scored a pair of runs in the first off of Hornets starter Ben Hendrickson (4-1) before Shenandoah scored four of its own in the second.
Cory Nelson led off the frame with a single down the left-field line before Adam Delauter plated Nelson with a double over the first-base bag.
Kevin Brashears and Jon Holcomb followed with RBI singles, with Jesse Henry capping the rally by driving in Holcomb with a groundout.
The Eagles retook the lead by scoring three runs on three hits and a Hornets error in the fourth; Shenandoah then seized the advantage for good with a three-run sixth.
Greg Van Sickler, who had reached on an infield error, scored the eventual game-winning run on a Nelson double into the left-center gap.
Hendrickson went the distance for the victors, allowing five runs (four earned) on 11 hits and one walk. He struck out four.
Shenandoah banged out double-digit hits for the third straight game of the regional with Holcomb, Henry and Mike Smith getting three each. Henry had the final big hit with a two-run homer in the eighth.