NEWARK, Del. -- The University of Delaware baseball team rode a pair of late-inning runs to a 7-6 victory over James Madison University Saturday afternoon at Bob Hannah Stadium.

Delaware (20-16, 7-4 CAA), who led 5-1 after three innings, erased a seventh-inning deficit for its third consecutive victory. The game-winning run was scored in the eighth by Junior Kevin Mohollen who went 4-5 scoring a pair of runs. In total, six different Blue Hens recorded multiple hits including Jordan Hutchins (2-3, 2 RBI) and Calvin Scott (3-4, 3B, 2RBI).

After a strong top of the first inning from freshman Billy Sullivan IV (6.0 IP, 4 ER, 8K), Delaware’s offense exploded for three runs and five hits in the opening frame. After Mohollen led-off with a double and advanced to third on a groundout, Kyle Baker singled home Mohollen. Consecutive singles from Diaz Nardo, Scott and Hutchins brought the score to 3-0.

The Hens would add to their lead in the second when Austin Niggebrugge scored on a Mohollen stolen base. After James Madison (20-19, 5-9 CAA) scored a run in the top of the third, Delaware quickly answered. Junior Nick Patten (2-5, 2B) doubled and later scored on a Hutchins single.

Facing a 5-1 deficit, the Dukes rallied for three runs in the fourth to cut the Delaware lead to 5-4. After the rocky fourth, Sullivan IV settled down, striking out four of the final nine batters he faced.

James Madison took the lead in the seventh inning, but the Blue Hens quickly answered back. Nardo singled with two outs and scampered home on a clutch triple by Scott.

Senior Colman Vila (3-2), who stranded the bases loaded in the seventh, pitched a scoreless eighth setting the table for the Blue Hens to take the lead. In the eighth, Mohollen singled with one out and advanced to second on a groundout, bringing up Baker. On the fifth pitch that he saw from Matt Colon (1-1), the outfielder hit a sharp ground ball between the first baseman and second baseman, that he was able to beat out for a hit. On the play, Mohollen never stopped running, scoring from second on a dropped throw error at the plate.

In the ninth, Vila pitched a 1-2-3 inning, earning his third win of the season.

Delaware goes for the sweep tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m. Freshman Chris Ludman (1-1, 4.30 ERA) will make his second consecutive Sunday start. He will be opposed by James Madison’s Nick Stewart (2-3, 3.16 ERA).

Head coach Jim Sherman

“It’s always fun to win those types of games. Every pitch for the final three innings of the game today was important. Fortunately, we ended up on the winning side today. It was another good college baseball game and it was a lot of fun to win that game. We got another good offensive display today getting 16 hits. I thought Sullivan had a tough fourth inning, but I was so impressed with the way he bounced back throwing a pair of scoreless innings in the fifth and sixth. That’s a sign of maturity and composure by a young player. He did a great job of calming himself down and giving us more innings. Meeker wasn’t as sharp as he has been, but we cannot expect to him to be as perfect as he has been for the last two years. He’ll bounce back. Then Vila came in and picked him up to finish it out. It was another good day for us. Tomorrow we’re going to throw Ludman and stay with what we did last Sunday. I thought he gave us a really strong outing last weekend, allowing just one run through four innings, and three runs through five. The most important part was he gave us a chance to win. It was just unfortunate that we couldn’t produce at the plate in that game. Hopefully, Luddy will again give us a strong outing and give us every opportunity to sweep the series.”

On moving into sole possession of third place in the CAA standings:

“Today is another important step toward earning one of the top-two spots at this season’s CAA Tournament. That’s important because the top-two teams earn a bye in the first round. Our ultimate goal is to finish either first or second to earn that bye. Every win that we can earn pushes us closer. Every game from here on out is like a postseason game for us.”

 Kevin Mohollen

“The last two days are great examples of the highs and lows of baseball. One day you go 0-4, and the next day you get four hits. It just shows you that any given day can be a good one at the park, so you just have to battle back. The key is to not change your swing too much and still approach at-bats the same way. Today was a big win for our team, and even bigger for our young freshman. We took the early 5-1 lead and the James Madison responded with the three runs to make it a closer game. Following the tough inning, Billy immediately bounces back throwing two zeros. That showed both his maturity and composure on the mound and was impressive. Billy plays a big role on this team and has been crucial in many of our series wins this season because he gives us a quality start every time out.”  

HEN SCRATCHINGS:   
• By virtue of UNCW's 14-3 loss to Towson, the Blue Hens are now in sole possession of third place in the CAA standings. 
• Delaware scored a run following a James Madison run in two of three innings today. • The Blue Hens mashed a season-high 16 hits for the second time in three games. 
• The Hens are now hitting .282 this season at home and improved to 14-6 at Bob Hannah Stadium.
• Delaware improves to 7-0 this season when scoring at least six runs and to 17-0 when leading after eight innings.  
• Today's win guarantees Delaware its seventh consecutive CAA home series win. 
• When out hitting opponents this season the Hens are 16-1. 
• Patten reached base for the 27th consecutive game and is now hitting .264 this season. The first baseman is hitting .389 (14-36) in CAA play this season scoring seven runs and driving in six over the Hens 11 conference games. 
• Sullivan IV has now struck out at least eight batters in all four CAA starts this season. The righty has struck out 42 batters in 23.2 innings. 
• Sullivan allowed his first career home run today in the fourth inning. 
• Hutchins drove in another two runs today. The freshman has now driven six runs this week, all with two outs. 
• Scott drove in his 15th two-out run of the season. The senior is hitting .383 with two outs this season. 
• Mohollen increased his average to .318 this season due to his four-hit day. The four hits tied his career-high. 
• The centerfielder is now hitting .394 this season at home having scored 22 runs in 20 games. The junior has hit 11 extra-base hits (10 2B, 3B) and has driven in 11 runs at Bob Hannah Stadium.
• Meeker allowed his first earned run in his last five appearances. The righty had thrown 8.1 innings without giving up an earned run.