JMU roundup: Dukes finish baseball home sweep

HARRISONBURG — Freshman left-hander Eric Yankey earned his first collegiate win and freshman second baseman Kyle McPherson went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs to lead the James Madison University baseball team to a 7-5 win over Canisius on Monday afternoon, as the Dukes completed their four-game sweep at Eagle Field at Veterans Memorial Park.

JMU scored runs in four of the first five innings, including three in the first, to jump out to a 7-1 lead and held off a feisty Griffins offense to win its fifth straight contest and move to 8-4 on the season. The four-game sweep over the last three days dropped Canisius to 5-9 in 2015.

McPherson accounted for half of the Dukes’ six hits, while Yankey made the most of his first career start, throwing five complete innings, allowing six hits and just one run while striking out a pair to earn the win.

In all, five of the Dukes’ six hits were doubles and JMU got a leadoff baserunner in four of the first five frames. Chad Carroll’s leadoff double also marked the 13th consecutive game, dating back to 2014, in which the junior shortstop has reached base.

The Dukes will be back in action on Tuesday, when they welcome Valparaiso to Harrisonburg for a noon contest. The game, which will be JMU’s fifth in four days and is part of a nine-game, nine-day stretch for the Dukes, was moved from 2 p.m. to noon in an effort to avoid late-afternoon weather.