WVU Didn’t Provide Enough Support For Manoah
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Mountaineer junior pitcher Alek Manoah has had plenty of great outings this season.
Saturday night against Duke, he was good, but he wasn’t great.
West Virginia needed great.
WVU dropped a 4-0 decision to the Blue Devils at Monongalia County Ballpark in the NCAA Regionals.
Manoah obviously got no run support, as the Mountaineers were shut out by Duke sophomore pitcher Bryce Jarvis. It was just the third time this season that WVU has failed to score a run.
But Saturday also equaled the second most earned runs Manoah has allowed this year. In addition, he equaled his season high in free passes.
“Four walks,” Manoah said in disgust.
The 6-foot-6, 260-pound junior from Miami is expected to be a high first round MLB Draft choice Monday, but he tasted defeat for just the fourth time in 2019, as his record fell to 9-4 after the loss to the Blue Devils.
“We went out and gave it our best, but came up short,” the usually talkative Manoah said in providing unusually clipped answers throughout his postgame interview session.
The Big 12 Pitcher of the Year and first-team All-American struck out nine on Saturday and allowed just four hits to the Blue Devils, but those four hits, along with the four walks and one hit batter, put Duke in the position to score four runs.
That was more than enough for a Blue Devil victory.
West Virginia couldn’t push any runs across the plate against Jarvis, who scattered six hits over eight innings.
“That kid on the other side threw the ball,” noted Manoah.
For the Mountaineer ace to pitch again for WVU – he’ll almost certainly sign a pro contract after being drafted Monday, thus ending his college career – he’s going to need some help from his friends. West Virginia faces Texas A&M in an elimination game Sunday at noon. If the Mountaineers win that, they’ll get another shot at Duke Sunday at 6 p.m. It will take win there and yet another, this on Monday at 4 p.m. over the Blue Devils again, to earn a berth in the Super Regional. A loss in any of those next three games will end WVU’s season.
“We just have to win the first inning, and then go win game one,” explained Manoah about what it will take to stay alive. “You can’t advance unless you win game one. We have plenty of pitching left. We just have to win game one and then go from there.”