NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Timely hitting and extra-base hits dominated the weekend as Lipscomb completed a three-game sweep of La Salle in college baseball action.
The Bisons completed the perfect weekend with a 7-5 victory Sunday afternoon at Ken Dugan Field at Stephen L Marsh Stadium.
“La Salle is a good baseball team,” Lipscomb skipper Jeff Forehand said. “They have a really good offense and can strike quick. We played some real quality baseball this weekend and got a big sweep. I thought we had good at-bats. Now we just have to keep it going because we have some tough games coming up.”
Lipscomb (6-2) jumped on top 3-0 in the first and never looked back.
Senior shortstop Grant Massey got things moving with a single to center before swiping second for his team-leading fourth stolen base of the season. Senior left fielder Jonathan Allison and sophomore third baseman Hunter Hanks were then walked to load the bases for redshirt junior designated hitter Josh Lee.
Josh Lee sliced a ball just inside the first base bag down for a standup two-RBI double as Massey and Allison came around to score.
Redshirt sophomore catcher Tyler Bethune brought home Hanks with a single to right field, his first hit of the season.
After La Salle (4-6) scored a run in the top of the fourth, Lipscomb responded by hanging a three-spot in the bottom half of the frame.
Bethune recorded his second hit of the day with a one-out infield single deep in the 5-6 hole and then stole second. Senior second baseman Mike Korte put two men on after drawing a walk on four-straight pitches.
“Tyler has been slowed a little bit and we were able to get him back behind the plate,” Forehand said. “He got a couple of hits and had a lot of production in all three of his at-bats. It’s nice to see him get back in there and do well.”
Redshirt junior first baseman Adam Lee cleared the bases with a triple to the wall in left center to make it a 5-1 Lipscomb lead.Freshman center fielder Michael Gigliotti then singled back up the middle to plate Adam Lee.
Lipscomb junior starter Denton Norman was moving along nicely on the hill, but ran into some trouble in the fifth. He gave up a leadoff single and then walked the next two batters to load the bases with no outs. Sophomore lefty John Pryor came on in relief, worked one inning and gave up three hits as the Explorers scored four runs to trim the Bisons’ lead to 6-5.
The Purple and Gold tacked on an insurance run in the sixth when Hooker laced a one-out triple to the wall in right and then later came around to score.
Freshman Jeffrey Passantino and senior Jason Ziegler tossed the final four frames. Pryor got the win and improved to 1-1, while Ziegler picked up his first save of the season. The duo combined to give up one hit and record three punch outs.
- Lipscomb improves to 3-0 all-time against La Salle. The Bisons out-hit the Explorers 38-29 and out-scored them 28-12.
- Massey extended his hitting streak to 17 games and has now reached base safely in 23 straight.
- The Bisons are off to their best start since the 2005 season when they started 7-2.
- For the weekend Lipscomb recorded 15 extra-base hits – nine doubles, three triples and three home runs.
- Hooker recorded a weekend cycle. He hit two HR’s, two doubles, one triple and a single.
- Norman gave up four runs on four hits in four innings of work. He struck out three and walked four.
- Bethune was the lone Bison to record multi-hits. He was 2-for-3 with a run scored, a RBI and a stolen base.
- Lipscomb stole a season-high four bases Sunday, with Gigliotti swiping two.
Lipscomb is set to host Tennessee Tech Tuesday at Dugan Field with the first pitch scheduled for 4 p.m.
“I don’t want this to sound like coach speak, but we have set goals and as long as we meet those, we are going to win some games,” Forehand said. “I like what I’ve seen so far, but we have to keep dredging along and get back at it on Tuesday.”