Bridgeport wins second consecutive elimination game, 12-2 over University

(Photo gallery courtesy of Joey Signorelli/

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — Facing elimination for the second consecutive game, the seven-time defending state champions from Bridgeport posted another dominant victory to extend their season. The No. 2 Indians (29-5) defeated University 12-2 in five innings to force a decisive game Saturday in the Class AAA Region I, Section 2 tournament.

“Our backs were against the wall,” said Bridgeport head coach Robert Shields. “We haven’t been in this situation since Elkins four years ago. [Adam] Riggleman played and he is at Glenville State now. So it has been a while since we have been in that situation. If you want to live to play the next day, this is what you have to do. They came today to play and hopefully we’ve got one more in us tomorrow.”

Two days after falling to the Hawks 13-3, Bridgeport took control of Friday’s game with a five-run second inning. Drew Bailey, Aidan Paulsen and Cam Cole had run-scoring hits in the frame.

“I thought we had some guys that set the tone today that did a really nice job with good plate appearances, getting people in scoring position and coming through. That’s what we need to do. That’s what I am accustomed to with Bridgeport baseball. We were hitting it in the air early. But we got it out of the air and started hitting it on the ground and finding holes.”

University (14-14) answered with a pair of runs in the third inning. Noah Braham sent Brodie Latocha to the plate with an RBI single. Wenkai Campbell later scored on a wild pitch to cut the University deficit to 5-2.

However, the Indians scored seven runs in the next three innings to post a run-rule victory. Paulsen went 2-for-4 with a two-run home run.

Christopher Harbert went the distance on the mound. He allowed just three hits.

“I thought Chris did a great job. That was his longest outing of the year. He kept them off balance and was hitting his spots really well. When he did miss, he didn’t miss bad.”

First pitch for Saturday’s winner-take-all game is set for 6 p.m. The winner will face Morgantown in the regional round.

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