Two-Run Ninth Hands LMU First Loss of 2014
Utah Valley scored twice in the top of the ninth to earn a 5-3 victory over LMU on Saturday.
Feb. 15, 2014
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The LMU baseball team (1-1) got on the board early with two runs in the first inning, but a two-run ninth inning for Utah Valley (1-1) proved to be the difference as it broke a 3-3 stalemate and handed the Wolverines a 5-3 victory over LMU on Saturday at LMU's Page Stadium.
With the game tied at three with one out in the ninth, LMU's Sean Buckle got into some trouble, striking out Beau Kallas with a breaking ball that got away from freshman catcher Cassidy Brown that allowed the runner to reach safely. A single pushed runners to first and second before Buckle struck out Seth Rhineer for the second out. Kade Andrus, who finished 3-for-3 with two RBI and a triple short of the cycle, drew a walk to load the bases and bring pinch-hitter Zac Fuller to the plate. The freshman Fuller hit a one-hopper to the left of Tyler Cohen at third base where Cohen dove and made the stop, but his throw to second sailed into right field, allowing a pair of runs to come into score.
Senior Patrick McGrath got the start for the Lions, tossing 7.0 innings and allowing three runs on seven hits with five strikeouts. The right-hander surrendered a pair of long balls on Saturday, allowing a solo shot to Andrus in the third and a game-tying solo homer to Sean Moysh in the sixth. Buckle tossed a perfect eighth inning before running into the trouble in the ninth, eventually allowing the two unearned runs on two hits and two walks en route to falling to 0-1 with the loss.
Utah Valley starter Danny Beddes took a no-decision on Saturday, allowing three runs over 4.0 innings before his offense came to the rescue. Tyler Sturdivant earned the victory out of the bullpen, tossing a scoreless eighth inning and turning the ball over to Kyle Valgardson for the save. The big right-hander allowed the tying run to come to the plate, but promptly retired David Fletcher with a man on first to preserve the victory and claim his first save of the season.
LMU's middle-infield combo of Fletcher and David Edwards turned in multi-hit games in the loss, as Fletcher finished 2-for-5 with a run scored and a stolen base, while Edwards went 3-for-4 with a RBI and a stolen base.
LMU and Utah Valley will decide the three-game series tomorrow at 1 p.m.