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Walks haunt Maryland baseball pitchers as Terps fall to West Virginia, 8-1

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The Mountaineers took advantage of 12 walks to win in College Park.

Maryland baseball Andrew Vail vs. VCU Maryland Baseball (@TerpsBaseball)

After a 16-10 comeback win against William & Mary on Tuesday, the bats were silent for Maryland baseball one day later, and West Virginia capitalized on inconsistent Terps pitching to win 6-1 in College Park.

Seven Maryland pitchers combined to walk a season-high 12 West Virginia batters, only recording seven strikeouts to make up for it. The Mountaineers led early thanks to these free passes and never looked back.

Nick Turnbull took the mound for Maryland on Wednesday, his first D1 college baseball start. The first-start jitters got to the righty, as he didn't even get out of the first inning, recording just one out and giving up four runs, two of them earned.

Maryland’s offense was nonexistent after putting up 16 runs on Tuesday, recording five hits while striking out 11 times.

Catcher Justin Vought, who drove in five on Tuesday, wasn’t in the lineup on Wednesday with a sinus infection. His absence was felt, as no Maryland players recorded multiple hits. For West Virginia, two players had multi-hit games as the Mountaineers hit two home runs: a solo shot from Tyler Doanes and a two-run shot from Andrew Zitel.

The Mountaineers put up a four-spot in the first, all four runs coming without the ball leaving the infield. Turnbull walked the first two batters of the inning, both coming around to score on a passed ball and RBI groundout. A walk and fielder’s choice loaded the bases, and reliever Daniel O’Connor allowed two runs to score on a hit-by-pitch and infield single.

O’Connor and Sean Heine walked in a run in the second, walking four of the first six batters of the inning to increase West Virginia’s lead to 5-0.

Doanes continued the run scoring party in the fifth, hitting a solo home run to lead off the inning and give the Mountaineers a 6-0 lead.

Maryland was finally able to put some runs on the board in the bottom half. The first two batters of the inning reached base, and a Ben Cowles walk loaded the bases. AJ Lee drove home Michael Pineiro on a sac fly, cutting the lead to 6-1.

On a positive note, Andrew Vail threw 1.2 perfect innings of work, lowering his season ERA to 1.00. Vail was one of the few positives for the Terps on Wednesday, who struggled to generate run-scoring opportunities and allowed too many on defense.

West Virginia tacked on two more in the eighth, as pinch-hitter Zitel hit a two-run home run off Mike Vasturia, making his second appearance in as many days.

After Heine, three of the last four Maryland pitchers used had hitless outings: Vail, Drew Wilden and John Murphy. Wilden and Murphy finished off the game with two hitless innings of work.

The Terps loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the ninth, but couldn’t plate any runs and fell to 16-16 on the season.

Maryland will look to rebound as it travels to Northwestern for a weekend series starting Friday at 3:30 p.m. ET.