Deacs Defeat Winthrop 4-2 to Sweep Season Series
Brandon Johnson allowed two runs, only one earned, on six hits in 5 1/3 innings pitched.
Brandon Johnson allowed two runs, only one earned, on six hits in 5 1/3 innings pitched.

May 12, 2009

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - Wake Forest broke open a 2-2 tie with two runs in the bottom of the seventh and the Demon Deacon bullpen threw 3 2/3 scoreless innings to lift the Deacs to a 4-2 win over Winthrop on Tuesday night at Wake Forest Baseball Park.

Wake Forest improves to 22-27 on the season, while Winthrop drops to 30-22 on the year.

Pitching was the story of the game for the Demon Deacons. Making just his second start of the season, Brandon Johnson threw extremely well, allowing two runs, only one earned, on six hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out two and did not walk a batter. The Wake Forest bullpen made sure the Eagles would not score again as they held Winthrop scoreless over the final 3 2/3 innings, allowing just two hits.

Ryan McGrath improved his record to 3-1 on the season, throwing a perfect 1 2/3 innings and striking out two batters. Zach White earned his team-leading third save of the season, allowing a hit and striking out a batter in the ninth.

Austin Stuart suffered the loss for Winthrop to drop to 0-1. Stuart allowed three runs on three hits in two innings.

Evan Ocheltree had a team-high three hits in four plate appearances in the game and scored a run. Ryan Semeniuk came off the bench and went 2-for-2, including driving in the game-tying run. Bentley Heyman added two hits and an RBI. Mike Murray reached base four times in the game, recording a hit and drawing three walks. Tyler Smith drove in a game-high two runs.

Eddie Rohan and Eddie Tisdale each had two hits to lead Winthrop at the plate.

With the game tied at two, Wake Forest grabbed the lead with two runs in the bottom of the seventh. Murray led off the inning with his third walk of the game and moved to second when Weldon Woodall was hit by a pitch for the second time in the game. A passed ball moved the runners up to second and third. Smith grounded out to third to score Murray to put the Deacs in front 3-2. Heyman chopped a single over the third baseman's head to plate Woodall for Wake's fourth run of the game.

Winthrop threatened in the top of the ninth, but was unable to push across any runs. Sean Sullivan led off with a bloop into shallow right field that appeared that it would it drop in for a hit. However, Dustin Hood ranged out to right and made a spectacular diving catch with his back to the infield for the first out of the inning. The catch was important as the next two hitters reached via a double and a hit by pitch. The Deacs got the second out on a baserunning miscue by Winthrop. Murray caught John Murrian too far off of first base and threw to first to get him in a run down. Bryn Henderson, who started the game on the mound and went to designated hitter after coming out, tried to advance to third on the play, but was thrown out for the second out of the inning. White got Bryan Bogue to strike out swinging for the final out of the game.

Wake Forest scored first with a run in the bottom of the first. Hood reached on a one-out single to right center. Murray and Woodall drew consecutive walks to load the bases. Smith hit a sacrifice fly to left center to give the Demon Deacons a 1-0 lead.

Winthrop took its first lead of the game with two runs in the top of the sixth. Cam Walters reached on a fielding error by Smith to lead off the inning and came around to score on a double by Kevin Nolan to left field to tie the game at one. Rohan ripped a double down the left-field line to plate Nolan and give Winthrop a 2-1 lead.

The Demon Deacons answered with a run in the bottom of the sixth to tie the game. With one out, Ocheltree doubled off the left field wall. Carlos Lopez drew a walk to put runners at first and second. A groundout to the pitcher by Shane Kroker moved each runner up a base. Semeniuk reached on an infield single, which scored Ocheltree to tie the game at two.

Henderson started for Winthrop and pitched well, allowing a run on three hits in four innings pitched. He struck out three and walked three.

Wake Forest closes the season at home with a three-game series against No. 24 Miami this weekend. Game times are scheduled for 7 p.m. on Thursday, 6 p.m. on Friday and 1 p.m. on Saturday. The Deacs will honor their eight seniors before Friday night's game.