SPARTANBURG, S.C. – In just his second career start freshman hurler Jeffrey Passantino rang up a career high nine batters to lead the Lipscomb baseball team in a 3-0 series-clinching win over Atlantic Sun Conference foe USC Upstate in game one of a doubleheader at Harley Park on Saturday.
Passantino tossed 7.1 shutout innings, scattering four hits and no walks. His nine punch outs were the most by a Bison since Denton Norman struck out nine against Florida Gulf Coast in 2014.
The play of the game came in the top of the sixth when senior second baseman Mike Korte led off with a standup double to left centerfield. Redshirt junior Adam Lee reached base on a bunt single, but an errant throw from the pitcher allowed him to move to second and Korte to cross the plate.
Freshman speedster Michael Gigliotti followed with a bunt single of his own in the next at-bat, but this time a bad throw from the catcher allowed Adam Lee to come home and Gigliotti to advance to third.
Senior shortstop Grant Massey then knocked in Gigliotti for the game’s final tally with a sacrifice fly to right centerfield.
Gigliotti was the lone Bison to record multiple hits in the win.
Senior reliever Jason Ziegler pitched the final 1.2 innings to pick up his third save of the season. The southpaw entered the game with runners on the corners in the eighth, but shut the door with back-to-back punch outs.
With the win Lipscomb improves to 23-13, 4-4 A-Sun while Upstate falls to 13-26 overall and 4-7 in league play.
Check back after game two for a full recap of today’s doubleheader.
- Lipscomb improves to 11-9 all-time versus the Spartans.
- Passantino’s nine strike outs are the most by a Lipscomb freshman since John Pryor’s 10 against Western Kentucky on March 5th, 2014.
- With the win in game one, Lipscomb won its first A-Sun series of the season.
- Korte’s two-bagger was his fourth of the season.
- Upstate out hit Lipscomb 5-4.
- Head coach Jeff Forehand is now two wins from No. 450 for his career.
Following game three later this afternoon, the Bison return to action Tuesday April 21 when they visit Austin Peay for a 6 p.m. nonconference contest.