Seniors Back Solid Welmon Outing, Lions Beat Saint Mary's 4-2
Seniors Cullen Mahoney, Colton Plaia and Joey Boney each had two hits, while Colin Welmon tossed 7.2 strong innings.
March 22, 2013
MORAGA, Calif. -
Sophomore Colin Welmon turned in another solid start on Friday and a handful of senior players backed the outing with a pair of hits as LMU (9-12, 2-2 WCC) defeated Saint Mary's (6-16, 0-1 WCC) by a count of 4-2 at SMC's Louis Guisto Field to open a three-game West Coast Conference series.
Welmon tossed 7.2 innings on Friday, allowing two runs (one earned) on five hits with six strikeouts to improve to 4-1 on the year. The earned run came with two out in the seventh inning, snapping a string of 42.1 straight frames without allowing an earned run to score. His ERA now stands at 0.63 after six starts this year. Sophomore Sean Buckle entered with two out in the seventh and surrendered the hit before eventually dealing one inning and striking out one. Junior Carlos Fuentes entered with two down in the ninth and a runner aboard, striking out the only hitter he faced to record his second save of the year.
Seniors Cullen Mahoney, Colton Plaia and Joey Boney each collected two hits in the victory, with Mahoney posting a double, a run scored and a RBI. Plaia, Brice Savage and David Edwards all posted a RBI to help LMU to victory. Left-hander Ben Griset got the start and took the loss for Saint Mary's, allowing four runs (three earned) on eight hits over seven frames. With the loss, Griset fell to 1-2 on the year.
Brenden Kalfus led the Saint Mary's offense, finishing 2-for-3 with a sacrifice fly.
LMU got on the board first in the contest, scoring once in the second inning after Zac Fujimoto singled and stole a pair of bases. With the table set, LMU elected to use the suicide squeeze with Savage, who promptly laid down a beautiful bunt to score the run.
The lead stretched to 2-0 in the third when a Mahoney double was followed by a RBI-single from Plaia a few pitches later. LMU utilized a two-out rally in the fifth to score its third run of the game, benefitting from catcher's interference that allowed Matt Lowenstein to reach. After a Lowenstein steal for LMU's third and final stolen base of the game, Mahoney punched a RBI-single into right field to plate the run.
A pair of Lion errors allowed Saint Mary's to get on the board in the sixth. Boney made an error that allowed the leadoff man to reach before Savage bobbled a ball on the ensuing play, putting runners at first and second. A strikeout and a wild pitch pushed the runners to second and third before Kalfus drove a ball into centerfield for a sacrifice fly to cut the lead to 3-1.
Edwards got the run back for the Lions in the top of the seventh, collecting a RBI-single into centerfield to bring home Boney from second base. The speedy third baseman had reached on a single earlier in the inning.
The eighth inning started innocently enough for Welmon and the Lions as the right-hander put the first two down in order. A 10-pitch at bat from pinch hitter Cole Norton resulted in a single before Kalfus followed with a single into left centerfield to chase Welmon. Buckle entered and ran the count full at 3-2 before Shawn O'Brien shot a single through the right side to end Welmon's streak.
LMU will continue the three-game series against the Gaels tomorrow at 1 p.m.