|March 01, 2016||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Win: STEWART (1-0)||5.0||4||1||0||2||7|
|Loss: Jake Wyrick (0-1)||4.0||1||2||2||4||9|
|Riley Delgado (MT)||4||0||1||0||0||0|
|Brad Jarreau (MT)||3||0||1||0||1||0|
|Kevin Dupree (MT)||3||0||1||0||1||0|
|Kaleb King (MT)||4||1||1||0||0||0|
|Chaz Vesser (MT)||3||0||1||0||0||0|
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Between timely hitting and a solid outing from freshman pitcher Adam Stewart, the Lipscomb baseball team picked up a 6-1 midweek win over Middle Tennessee Tuesday night at Ken Dugan Field at Stephen L. Marsh Stadium.
“What a good win for our group,” Lipscomb head coach Jeff Forehand said. “Their (MT) guy was really good to start the game out, we couldn’t touch him. But our guys kept battling until we broke the ice and scored a couple of runs.
“Middle always has a good ball club. We were disappointed with the loss at their place last week, but it feels go to be able to come back and get this one. It was a good night for us.”
After taking a loss in the rain at Middle Tennessee last week, the Bisons turned the tables on the Blue Raiders.
Stewart made his first career start Tuesday after appearing in relief twice this season.
“I was really excited for Adam to get his first start and I thought he did a really good job,” Forehand said. “He really answered and gave us a solid five innings, including getting a big strikeout to end the fifth.
“He commanded the game from the front. I could not be more proud.”
The Homewood, Alabama native looked the part of a seasoned veteran as he was able to cruise through five innings of work. The right hander gave up four hits and one unearned run while striking out seven batters and walking two.
Lipscomb (6-2) scored the game’s first runs in the bottom of the third inning. Freshman left fielder Von Watson singled up the middle to drive in Michael Gigliotti and Zeke Dodson, giving the Bisons a 2-0 lead.
“To get that big RBI-hit with two outs was huge for us tonight,” Forehand said. “Von has been getting pitched to pretty tough, but he is really coming around at the plate. It was just a solid night at the plate for Von.”
Middle Tennessee (4-4) got on the scoreboard in the top of the fifth. Kaleb King singled and Chaz Vesser lined a double over the head of right fielder Allan Hooker. Hooker’s throw was cut off by Lee Solomon, who errantly tossed the ball into the Bison dugout, allowing King to cross the plate.
The Bisons offense came through with runs in the sixth, seventh, and eighth to solidify their lead.
Tevin Symonette doubled in the sixth and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Senior catcher Chucky Vazquez drove him in with a fielder’s choice.
Lipscomb added a pair of runs in the seventh. Hunter Hanks drew a walk and Gigliotti reached base on a bunt single. A sacrifice by senior first baseman Adam Lee allowed Hanks to score. Watson picked up his third RBI of the game when he doubled in Gigliotti to put Lipscomb ahead 5-1.
The Bisons cushioned their lead in the eighth when Symonette scored on a passed ball after drawing a walk earlier in the frame.
John Pryor was stellar in relief and picked up his first save of the year. He worked the final four innings, allowing just one hit while striking out seven batters and walking just two.
Around the Horn:
- Gigliotti extended his on-base streak to 40 games with a walk in the third inning. He also has a six game hitting streak.
- Gigliotti, Lee and Solomon have all reached base in all eight games this season.
- Lee is tied for the Atlantic Sun lead with 10 RBI on the year.
- Watson went 2-of-4 with 3 RBI. Five of his 10 career hits are doubles. He now leads the team with three multi-RBI games and second with three multi-hit contests.
- Gigliotti reached safely on a bunt single in the seventh inning. In 67 career games, the sophomore centerfielder has 27 bunt singles.
- Tuesday night’s game saw 29 combined strikeouts. The Bisons struck out 15 times while the Blue Raiders punched out 14 times.
- The Bisons swiped two bases in the win to give them 14 on the year. That is tops in the A-Sun. The next most is seven.
- The six walks draw extended Lipscomb's A-Sun leading total to 43. Next most is 27.
- Steady rain fell throughout the day on Tuesday in Nashville, causing the game to be delayed. Action got underway a little more than two and a half hours after the 4 p.m. scheduled start time.
The Bisons will hit the road tomorrow to face the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers in Bowling Green, Kentucky. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. at Nick Denes Field. Freshman righty Zach Shirey will make his first career start on the mound for Lipscomb.
“Western is always good and is very hard to play,” Forehand said. “They have a new coach. I was able to see a little bit of them this past weekend in a tournament where they beat Georgia. They are a very solid team. It will be a tough challenge and we will have our hands full tomorrow.”