Wednesday, September 17, 2008On Friday, September 19, the Atlantic Sun Conference will turn 30 years old. During the week leading up to the anniversary of the creation of the conference, the 30 Shining Moments that helped define, shape and mold the league are being announced at www.AtlanticSun.org.
No. 7 The most recent moment in the top ten occurred in the title game of the 2008 A-Sun Baseball Championship featuring Lipscomb and Gardner-Webb. Gardner-Webb opened the game with three runs in top of the first inning forcing Lipscomb to go to is bullpen early. The duo of Kyle Tognazzini and Rex Brothers limited the Runnin’ Bulldogs to one run over the next seven innings. Trailing 4-0 in the bottom of the sixth, Lipscomb sent 12 men to the plate in scoring six runs to take the lead. Caleb Joseph, who hit .407 for the week, collected two hits in the inning. The Bisons carried the 6-4 lead into the top of the ninth but could not close out the title as the Runnin’ Bulldogs rallied, scoring the tying run on a successful squeeze play executed by Aaron Miller.
Zeros followed until the 13th inning when Gardner-Webb dented the plate with a single tally only to see Lipscomb respond with a run of its own in the bottom half of the inning. Two innings later, Gardner-Webb appeared to finally grab hold of the contest, scoring twice for a 9-7 lead. The Bisons opened the last of the 15th with the first two reaching. A single by Allen Bolden cut the deficit to one and Joseph’s RBI ground out tied the game. Lipscomb loaded the bases to bring up Shane Simpkins who won the game on a single through the right side on an 0-2 count ending the longest title game, by innings, in NCAA Division I history. The Bisons carried the momentum of this win to the NCAA Regionals where in their first game, they defeated eventual national runner-up Georgia.
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