Navy’s baseball team swept Holy Cross in their season series with a 5-3 win at Terwilliger Brothers Field on Sunday afternoon. Riding on the momentum of Nick Burch’s first home run of the season, the team moved into second place in the Patriot League standings with a 17-16 record. The team clinched the win with four shutout innings from the bullpen, despite Holy Cross’ late-game rally.
The game got off to a great start for Navy, with Matthew Shirah retiring the Crusaders in order in the first inning. With one out in the bottom of the inning, Nick Burch cranked the first pitch he saw from Luke Fox over the left-field wall for his second homer of the season. The team added two more runs in the third inning, as a Kyle Rausch hit-by-pitch and a Logan Keller double set up Eduardo Diaz to hit a single into left field, allowing two runners to score on a Holy Cross throwing error.
Holy Cross got on the scoreboard in the fourth inning, cutting Navy’s lead to 3-1 with a Jack Toomey double followed by a Jake McElroy single. But Navy answered back in the bottom of the inning, with Rausch hitting a single that scored Burch, and a Keller groundout allowing Alex Smith to score from third base.
In the fifth inning, Holy Cross narrowed the gap to 5-3 with a two-run single into right field from Sean Scanlon. However, Shirah locked in and left two runners stranded by striking out Toomey and getting McElroy to line out. Navy then turned the ball over to the bullpen, with Nolan Jorgenson pitching two scoreless innings of middle relief and Jackson Beattie recording a six-out save, including the final two strikeouts of the game.
Navy head coach Paul Kostacopoulos praised the team’s performance, particularly the pitching, which was crucial in securing the win. He also noted the improvement in Burch’s form, who has recorded an extra-base hit in back-to-back games and has tallied at least one hit in six of his last eight appearances.
Navy’s victory over Holy Cross marked their first five-game regular-season sweep against a Patriot League foe since Bucknell in 2019. The team will look to continue their success as they head to Maryland Eastern Shore on Wednesday for their next game.