MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Edward Waters (26-23 overall) edged Bluefield State (25-25-1) 9-6 in Game 9 to advance into Friday’s later semifinals in the Black College Baseball World Series presented by Tyson Foods at Riverwalk Park – home of the Class AA Montgomery Biscuits – Friday.
Bluefield State was eliminated from the four-day joust with a 1-2 mark in Montgomery this week while 2-1 Edward Waters advanced to 5-2 in its last seven games in the BCBWSPBTF and will be in a rematch of Game 1 against Albany State later Friday.
Winning pitchers Darius Blagingane (3-3) worked the final five innings for EWU and allowed just two hits and a run while striking out six in quelling the BSU rallies. Bluefield’s Aaron Hedgepeth (1-2) was the losing moundman.
Sophomore utilityman Cayden Hutchinson blasted four hits, stole two bases and hit a go-ahead, three-run homer in the bottom of the seventh inning to top the attack for EWU. The Tigers initially fell behind 6-3 but rallied for four runs in the seventh.
Shortstop Tahir Meulens, who entered the game with a team-best .405 batting average and was on the Black College Nines Elite All-America team, roped three hits and drove in a run to keep the Blues in the game throughout nine innings,
The four-day tournament consists of double-elimination competition among NCAA Division II and NAIA teams in separate brackets for three days and a championship contest between bracket winners Saturday at 5 p.m. (CDT). The title game will be preceded by a special Black College Baseball World Series Presented by Tyson Foods Home Run Derby at 2 p.m. (CDT).
Thursday games (all times CDT) – Game 5 – Edward Waters 9, Savannah State 5; Game 6 – Rust 9, Wiley 2; Game 7 – Albany State 12, Bluefield State 2 (7 innings); Game 8 – 7:30 p.m. – Florida Memorial 12, Paine 2 (8 inn.).
Friday’s Schedule – Game 9 – Edward Waters +, Bluefield State +; Game 10 – 12:30 p.m. – Rust vs. Paine; Game 11 – 4 p.m. – Albany State vs. Edward Waters; Game 12 – 7:30 p.m. – Florida Memorial vs. Winner of Game 10.
Saturday Championship: 5 p.m. – bracket winners. Home Run Derby at 2 p.m.