File photo by Angela Roberts/The Left Bench

Maryland looks to continue improving against West Virginia

After winning a three-game series against Michigan State last weekend, Maryland (18-24, 5-9) heads to Morgantown, West Virginia to take on the West Virginia Mountaineers (22-19, 6-9) on Tuesday.

Freshman left-hander Jackson Wolf will likely start for the Mountaineers on Tuesday. Wolf holds a 2.84 ERA in 19 innings pitched heading into the midweek matchup. He’ll be up against an inconsistent Terrapin lineup batting .230 on the season..

Maryland’s offense is on the rise, though, with a win over James Madison last Tuesday ending the Terps’ six-game losing streak–their longest of the season.The team followed that up by taking two of three from Michigan State over the weekend. With the strengthening offense, junior Marty Costes has highlighted the lineup’s improvements. The outfielder had the game-winning hit on Sunday, hitting a grand slam and giving the Terps the lead over the Spartans.

The Terps will need to continue the improvements in the batters box this week if they want to win, with a pitching staff in need of as much the run support as possible. Redshirt freshman Billy Phillips is likely to start his second midweek in a row, after Maryland was forced to rework its rotation due to an injury to weekend starter Taylor Bloom against Michigan on April 13.

Phillips pitched a career-high four innings in his first career start last week, striking out four and allowing no runs. He enters the week with a 6.32 ERA in 15 ⅔ innings pitched. With senior Ryan Hill returning to the mound after eligibility issues earlier this season, the Terps’ bullpen is on the upswing, looking to improve their 5.00 ERA.

The improving Maryland pitching staff faces a strong West Virginia lineup, with Marques Inman, Kyle Gray and Darius Hill all hitting above .300 and no starters batting below .226. Gray leads the Mountaineers in home runs, with nine, and Hill leads in hits, with 54.

The Tuesday game is the Terps’ fourth road game in a seven-game stretch, and a much-needed win for a team that is only 4-6 in midweek matchups.

First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m.