|March 30, 2012||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Win: SINCLAIR (4-1)||7.0||6||2||2||2||5|
|Loss: LONG (4-3)||5.0||7||3||3||3||4|
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Behind a pair of home runs and solid pitching, the Lipscomb baseball team improved to 4-3 in Atlantic Sun Conference play with a 6-2 win over ETSU at Ken Dugan Field at Stephen L. Marsh Stadium on Friday night in Nashville.
The Bison (11-16, 4-3 A-Sun) rode strong pitching from senior righty Connor Sinclair (4-1) to the win over the Buccaneers (14-10, 3-4 A-Sun) as the veteran tossed seven innings allowing a pair of early runs. Sinclair then settled in and finished the night with six strikeouts and two walks along with six hits allowed.
Lipscomb then brought in junior reliever Tyler Burstrom in out of the bullpen to work the final two innings. Burstrom allowed two hits and a walk but kept ETSU off the scoreboard and secured the victory for the “Purple and Gold”.
“Connor gave us seven strong innings,” said Lipscomb skipper Jeff Forehand. “Then Burstrom came in and did a great job out of the pen. Just a good, well-played game for us. I’m proud of how we played and how we bounced back.”
ETSU got going right out of the gate with a first-inning solo home run but the Bison answered right back to tie the game 1-1. Junior right fielder Lee Wilson ledoff the frame with a single to center field to run his streak of games reached base to 33 in a row. Wilson then moved up to second on a single by senior left fielder M.L. Williams and then on to third on a groundout. That set the table for freshman first baseman Griffin Moore, who hit a fly ball to center that allowed Wilson to easily score from third.
The Bucs retook the lead with a run in the second thanks to a leadoff double and subsequent single up the middle but that would be all of the scoring for ETSU as Sinclair settled into a groove.
The 2-1 lead would hold for ETSU until the fifth inning when Williams drew a one-out walk before senior second baseman Zak Messer, the reigning A-Sun Player of the Week, launched his eighth blast of the season clearing the batting cages beyond the left field fence and putting Lipscomb out in front 3-2.
Lipscomb got things cranking again in the seventh as Williams ripped a leadoff triple to right center before coming home on Moore’s second sacrifice fly of the night to give the Bison a 4-2 cushion. Junior centerfielder Zach Lowery then ripped his second homer of the season for a two-run bomb bringing home Messer, who had walked to make it a 6-2 lead.
John Long (4-3) took the loss for the Bucs giving up three runs in five innings of work on the hill. The Bison tagged Long for seven of the 10 hits in the contest.
The Lipscomb defense matched a season high turning three double plays at critical times in the game.
The Bison and Bucs continue the series on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. at Dugan Field. It will be “Senior Alumni Day” at the park with free admission for those ages 55 and up as well as a free cookout beginning at 1 p.m.