Gardner-Webb (17-7-1, 5-4 Big South) scored four in the first inning, with Dusty Quattlebaum finishing a 10-pitch at bat with an RBI single to drive home the game's first run. Adam McFarland followed with an RBI double, and John Harris laced a two-run double down the line in right to give the visitors a lead they would not give up.
VMI (14-13-1, 4-5 Big South) would not go away without a battle, plating three runs in the bottom of the first - but the Runnin' Bulldogs got an RBI double from Aaron Miller and a two-run double from Jake Watts in the top of the second to key a three-run surge that put the visitors up 7-3.
The 'Dogs held an 8-6 lead after four innings, and effectively put the game away with three-run bursts in the sixth and seventh innings.
Quattlebaum had an RBI single and scored in the sixth, and roped an RBI double in the seventh to start another rally. McFarland followed with a two-run double that gave Gardner-Webb a healthy 14-8 lead heading into the seventh-inning stretch.
The Keydets added a run in the bottom of the seventh, and another in the eighth, but would get no closer than the final margin.
Adam Izokovic (1-1) came out of the pen to earn the win, working 3.1 innings with six strikeouts and three runs allowed. Brett Stackhouse worked the final 2.0 innings to keep VMI at bay.
Gardner-Webb pounded out 17 hits in the game (six doubles), with Quattlebaum (3-for-5, 3 runs, 2B, 3 RBI), McFarland (2-for-5, run, 2 2B, 4 RBI), Benji Jackson (2-for-2, 2 runs), Watts (2-for-5, 2B, 2 runs, 2 RBI), Harris (2-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI) and Miller (2-for-5, 2B, RBI) leading the way. The Runnin' Bulldogs were effective with runners in scoring position, batting .455 on the day (10-of-22) in that situation - including five RBI with two outs.
George Piccirilli (3-for-6, 3 runs) and Alex Haitsuka (3-for-6, RBI) each had three of VMI's 17 hits. Jeremy Brown (2-1) was saddled with his first loss of the season, starting and lasting just 1.1 innings (six hits, seven runs, two walks).
Gardner-Webb will travel to USC Upstate on Wednesday (4/6) at 6:00 pm, before returning home to host Charleston Southern in another Big South Conference series (April 8-April 10).