RADFORD, Va., May 8, 2012 - James Madison and Radford battled to a 3-3 tie through five innings before rain and lightning delayed and ultimately ended the non-conference baseball contest on Tuesday evening at the RU Baseball Field.
JMU actually took the lead in the top of the sixth on an RBI single by freshman Aaron Hoover (Centreville, Va./Westfield) before the game went into the delay. With the game unable to resume, by rule any runs in an incomplete inning that affect the outcome are negated, resulting in the 3-3 tie.
With the tie, JMU sits at 15-29-2 after its second deadlock of the season. The Dukes had no ties since 2001 entering this season and only eight ties in the program's 42 seasons. The only other season with two ties came in 1988. Head coach Spanky McFarland had two ties in his 14 seasons at JMU in almost 800 games before posting two this year. RU's ledger rests at 26-20-1 after its first tie since 1991.
The line scores were identical for both teams through the five innings of play with three runs on four hits and two errors. Both starters were credited with two unearned runs surrendered due to the errors.
Freshman Michael Howerton (Chesterfield, Va./Matoaca) allowed all three Highlander runs in the first. Senior right-hander Josh Futter (Columbia, Md./Wilde Lake) worked two scoreless frames in the fourth and five.
Keith Fritz started and went three innings with the two unearned runs for Radford.
All three JMU runs came on RBI ground balls. A leadoff single from junior third baseman Johnny Bladel (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge), an error and a wild pitch put two in scoring position in the first before RBI grounders by freshman shortstop Chad Carroll (Oakton, Va./Oakton) and junior second baseman Casey Goss (Springfield, Mo./Glendale). Hoover added an RBI groundout in the fourth to score the tying run.
Radford's runs all came in the first as center fielder Zach Costello posted an RBI single, third baseman Matt Mack reached on an error to score shortstop Brett Mollenhauer and designated hitter Patrick Marshall drove in a run on a fielder's choice.
JMU resumes conference action with its final home games of the 2012 regular season as the Dukes host VCU in a Colonial Athletic Association series Friday, Saturday and Sunday.