by Andrew Goodwin, Sports Information Assistant
Whitworth moved to 5-6 with the win, while Centenary dropped to 6-2. The victory secured a winning road trip for the Pirates, who beat two of the three top-25 teams they faced this weekend.
Both teams' starting pitchers were locked in for the first five innings. Neither Matthew Devillier or Smith allowed a run in the inaugural five frames, and the two offenses combined for just five hits.
To put the game's first run on the board, Whitworth took advantage of a mistake by the Gents. With two outs and runners on first and second, JT Phelan hit a sky-high pop up that was misplayed by a stumbling Devillier. Taylor Poffenroth was running on the pitch and came all the way around to score.
Spencer Locati continued the rally with a single up the middle, scoring Phelan and Joel Condreay from second and third. A walk from Tyler Bailey in the next at-bat chased Devillier. The Gent reliever, Jackie Allen, escaped the inning with a strikeout.
Devillier was hit with the loss after giving up the only three runs of the game. All three were unearned.
Smith vacated the rubber after five shutout innings. He struck out nine Gents, half the number of batters he faced, and earned the win. T.J. Orchard replaced Smith and contributed four more scoreless innings to earn the save.
Poffenroth and Locati both went 2-4 to lead Whitworth at the plate, and Locati finished with both of the Pirates' RBIs. Condreay was the only other Buc with a hit.
Weather-permitting, the Pirates will return home to take on Whitman in their home-opener and first game of Northwest Conference play Feb. 24-25.