NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Behind a career high four hits from sophomore second baseman Lee Solomon, the Lipscomb baseball team flew past the UT-Martin Skyhawks 12-4 Tuesday night at Ken Dugan Field at Stephen L. Marsh Stadium in nonconference action.
Solomon continued his recent hot streak by going 4-for-4 at the dish. He scored three runs to take the conference lead with 30.
In his last two games, Solomon has batted 7-of-8 with five RBI, six runs scored and eight stolen bases.
“The last few games we’ve expected him to get a hit and steal a base, which seems like it’s easy,” said Lipscomb skipper Jeff Forehand. “He’s playing really well right now. Hopefully he can continue that.”
After stealing a school record five bases in the win Sunday against Mississippi Valley State, Solomon swiped three more on Tuesday to bring his season total to an Atlantic Sun leading 20.
The Skyhawks (7-18) wasted no time getting on the scoreboard, plating a pair of runs to take a 2-0 lead in the top of the first frame. The Bisons (16-9) quickly answered back in the bottom of the inning. Solomon drew a 1-out walk before swiping second and moving to third on a ground out. He came around to score in the next at bat on a passed ball.
Another run in the second put UT-Martin’s advantage back 3-1, but that would be the final lead of the night for the visitors as the Bisons countered with an eight-run third to put the game out of reach.
Redshirt senior first baseman Adam Lee led the Lipscomb charge with a 3-run homer that snuck just inside the left foul pole. Solomon and Michael Gigliotti scored on the home run after reaching on back-to-back singles.
Redshirt freshman left fielder Tevin Symonette followed with a single to left before sophomore right fielder Allan Hooker picked up his 17th free pass of the year. Sophomore third baseman Tyler Brown also drew a walk after working the Skyhawk pitcher for a nine-pitch at bat to load the bases for sophomore backstop Jeffrey Crisan.
The Apopka, Florida native ripped a single to left field, plating Symonette and Hooker for his third and fourth RBI of the season.
Junior shortstop Hunter Hanks then reached base on a fielding error to juice the bases once more. Gigliotti made it 7-3 after drawing another walk before Solomon knocked in another with a RBI-infield single. Hanks rounded out the scoring in the frame after crossing the dish on a passed ball to make it 9-3 in Lipscomb’s favor.
Solomon tacked on RBI-singles in the fifth and seventh innings to give him three RBI in the game. He then came around the bend on a throwing error in the seventh to finish off the scoring for the Purple and Gold.
UT-Martin scored its final run of the night on a Ryan Helgren single in the sixth.
Freshman Adam Stewart earned his second win of the year out of the bullpen after pitching five innings and allowing one earned run on five hits while striking out two.
“It’s fun to see us put up double-digit runs,” Forehand said. “But the thing about tonight were the guys on the mound and in the bullpen. They were good. They gave us a chance to come back like that after we went down.”
Along with the potent offense and the solid pitching Tuesday night, the Bisons also looked sharp in the field, turning a season high five double plays.
“It all goes together,” Forehand said. “We turned five double plays tonight and those are always big momentum swings, not just for the defense but for the offense when we come in.”
Lipscomb entered the contest having turned just 15 double plays on the season.
Around the Horn:
- Lipscomb improves to 17-9 all-time against UT-Martin with the win, including an 11-2 advantage at Dugan Field.
- With the 8-run second frame, the Bisons have now scored five or more times in an inning nine times this season.
- Solomon and Lee added to their A-Sun leading walk totals by drawing one each. They now have 23 on the year.
- Lee drove in three runs, pushing his team-leading total to 36 – the second most in the A-Sun
- Reaching base in all five plate appearances, Solomon overtook Lee for the A-Sun lead in on-base percentage at .513. Adam Lee is now second at .500.
- Alex Dorso made his first career start on the mound. The freshman tossed 3.0 frames, gave up three runs on six hits and walked one.
- Kyle Kemp struck out the side in the ninth to bring his season strikeout total to 11 in 6.1 innings.
- The Bisons have now scored double-digit runs in three straight games, giving them nine on the year.
- With Lee’s home run in the third, Lipscomb has homered in a season-best five consecutive games.
- Lee extended his on-base streak to 15 games.
- Solomon and Lee picked up their ninth multi-RBI games of the season.
- Solomon also grabbed his team-leading ninth multi-hit game.
- Symonette joined Solomon as the lone Bisons to pick up multiple hits. He was 2-of-5.
- Freshman Von Watson took a ball off the top of the wall for his team-leading eighth double of the year.
- Hunter Hanks tied Solomon for a game-high three runs scored. He also hit his fourth two-bagger of the season.
- Lee swiped his 10th stolen base of the season, giving Lipscomb three players with double digits (Solomon – 20, Gigliotti – 11, Lee – 10). Hooker also picked up his seventh theft.
With Atlantic Sun Conference play just around the corner, Lipscomb hits the road this weekend for the Lone Star state to take on Dallas Baptist in its final nonconference series of the season. The three -game set will begin Friday with a 6:30 p.m. first pitch.
“I think we can build on this and like I said, scoring a bunch of runs is always fun so maybe we can continue that same formula as we get to Dallas.”