Big Innings Back Griffin's Gem in 11-2 Victory
LMU scored six times in the fourth and five more in the eighth.
Feb. 17, 2013
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The LMU bats came alive on Sunday, pounding out 11 hits to the tune of 11 runs, while senior Aaron Griffin tossed a gem on the mound as the Lions (2-1) defeated Utah (1-2) by a count of 11-2 at LMU's Page Stadium. LMU scored six times in the fourth and five more in the eighth to earn the lopsided victory.
Griffin lasted eight innings, allowing just one run on five hits and two walks while striking out six. The native of El Cajon, Calif. got himself in trouble in the third, loading the bases with nobody out, but surrendered just one run in the frame to limit the damage. The LMU offense rewarded the right-hander for his efforts, turning the 1-0 deficit into a 6-1 lead by way of the six in the fourth. After escaping the third, Griffin faced just two over the minimum through the end of the eighth, improving to 1-0 with the victory. Freshman Michael Silva finished the game on the hill for LMU, surrendering an unearned run after walking a batter and seeing a pair of errors committed behind him defensively.
Cullen Mahoney once again led the Lions offensively, finishing 2-for-5 with a pair of runs scored. The native of Phoenix, Ariz. finished the weekend batting .455 (5-for-11) with four runs scored. Fellow senior Colton Plaia also had a productive game on Sunday, going 1-for-4 with a double, two runs scored and two RBI. Zac Fujimoto also contributed a pair of RBI in the victory.
Trailing 1-0 headed into the fourth, LMU exploded for a six-run inning to claim a 6-1 lead. Plaia delivered the first punch with a two-RBI double into the gap to bring home Matt Lowenstein and Mahoney who had reached with singles earlier in the frame. Tanner Donnels and Brice Savage each followed with RBI-singles back up the middle, with Savage's coming with two out. Strolling to the plate with men on second and third, Fujimoto followed the trend, shooting a single back up the middle to plate the final two runs of the inning.
The Lions tacked on five more insurance runs in the eighth to put the game out of reach. Mahoney single-handedly got things going in the frame, singling and stealing second base before moving to third on the errant throw to second from AJ Young. A wild pitch on ball four to Lowenstein allowed Mahoney to come home, but Lowenstein proved unsatisfied with that result, taking off for second before Young could recover the ball and fire down to second in time. After a throwing error allowed Plaia to reach on the ensuing play, pinch-hitter Chris Barnett lifted the first of two sacrifice flies in the inning into centerfield to bring home the speedy Lowenstein. Kevin Garcia followed with a double down the left field line, chasing Plaia to third and setting the table for a sacrifice fly off the bat of Tommy Cheek. Run-scoring hits from Kevin Kennedy and Joey Boney marked a pair of firsts and capped the scoring for the Lions, with Kennedy's RBI-single to right marking his first collegiate hit, and Boney's RBI-double serving as his first hit of the year.
LMU will return to action on Tuesday when it visits USC for a game at 6 p.m.
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