No. 8 Ends Streak at Eight
The Lions had their eight-game winning streak snapped by No. 8 UC Irvine on Tuesday.
March 31, 2009
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - LMU (16-13) fell to No. 8 UC Irvine (17-7) by a count of 19-8 on Tuesday at Page Stadium. The loss snapped a season-high eight-game winning streak for the Lions, and ran their record to 5-1 against ranked opponents this season. The Anteaters posted seven runs in both the first and ninth innings to bookend the scorecard in the victory.
Junior Brad Bauer had a career day at the plate, finishing 3-for-4 with a triple, two doubles, two runs scored and two RBI. The triple was Bauer's first of his Lion career. Shortstop Shon Roe also had a stellar day at the plate for LMU, batting 2-for-3 with four RBI. The freshman has now collected multiple RBI in each of his last three games, including four in back-to-back contests. Juniors Ryan Wheeler and Angelo Songco, along with senior Ollie Enos and freshman Evan Simonitsch, each extended their hitting streaks with one hit in the game. Wheeler has now hit safely in a career-high 16 games, while Songco has hit safely in 10. Enos owns a career-best nine-game streak, while Simonitsch has hit safely in five.
Freshman John Lally pitched the first two and two-thirds innings, allowing eight runs (four earned) on eight hits and a walk while striking out two batters. With the loss, Lally is now 0-2. Jeremy Burrell was the first reliever out of the bullpen for LMU, tossing three and a third innings, surrendering three runs on four hits and two walks before giving way to Jordan McClintick. The right-hander lasted two and two-thirds innings and gave up seven runs on eight hits before Steve Covelo allowed a run on one hit and two walks in a third of an inning to finish the game on the hill for LMU.
The Anteaters, who collected 21 hits, were paced by Ben Orloff and Jeff Cusick with four apiece. Orloff finished 4-for-7 with three runs scored and two RBI, while Cusick was 4-for-6 with a run scored, a double and a RBI. Jordan Fox contributed a three-RBI triple and Cory Olson was 2-for-4 with a home run, a double, two runs scored and four RBI. Noel Avison, who started and pitched a scheduled four innings, earned the victory after allowing three runs on eight hits and a walk. Cory Hamilton added two and a third innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on one hit and two walks before Kyle Necke pitched an inning and two-thirds scoreless. Matt Summers, who made his collegiate debut, finished the game on the hill for the Anteaters, tossing a 1-2-3 ninth inning.
UC Irvine came out swinging in the top of the first inning, scoring seven runs on five hits and one error, highlighted by a three-run home run off the bat of Olson. Orloff led things off with a single up the middle before a hit-by-pitch put runners at first and second. Cusick followed with a RBI-single into left centerfield to push the first run across. An out later, Ronnie Shaeffer singled to right field to plate a second run, preceding a Jordan Leyland RBI-single. After an error by Roe allowed another run to score and put runners at second and third, Lally recorded a strikeout for out number two. Olson took it upon himself to make sure LMU did not escape easily, blasting a three-run shot over the wall in left centerfield to plate the final three of four unearned runs charged to the Lions in the inning.
LMU got its first run of the game in the bottom of the second inning. Bauer hit the first pitch of the inning off Mikos Blue Monster in left field for a triple to start the frame. Roe wasted no time driving in the run, singling into left centerfield on the ensuing play. Irvine escaped further damage by way of a 5-4-3 inning-ending double play off the bat of Evan Simonitsch.
The Anteaters answered right back in the top of the third inning, scoring one two-out run. D.J. Crumlich walked on four pitches to start the inning before stealing second base with one out. After a strikeout for out number two in the frame, Orloff contributed the clutch-RBI single on the first pitch of his at bat.
The Lions cut the deficit to 8-3 with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. Enos got the ball rolling with a one-out single to left field before Bauer picked-up his second hit, a double, down the left field line on the ensuing play. Roe took advantage of the opportunity to hit with runners in scoring position again, lining a two-RBI single back up the middle. LMU went on to load the bases after a walk and a single, but Ryan Hawthorne lined into a double play to end the inning.
LMU inched to within four runs at 8-4 after scoring a solo run in the bottom of the sixth, benefiting from two Anteater errors. Enos reached on a throwing error from Eric Deragisch at third base before moving to second on a wild pitch. Hamilton settled down nicely to retire the next two hitters in order before Orloff dropped a fly ball down the left field line that allowed Enos to score from second base.
Irvine pushed forward to extend the lead to 12-4 with a four-run seventh. Shaeffer led things off with a single before back-to-back walks loaded the bases for pinch-hitter Ryan Fisher. With the change came a change on the hill for LMU as well, as McClintick took over for Burrell. The junior got two ground balls, but each drove in a run, leaving a runner at second with two out. Orloff followed with a RBI-single before Deragisch doubled into the left centerfield gap to bring home the final run of the inning.
LMU refused to surrender, answering for four runs of its own in the home-half of the seventh. A Hawthorne walk and a hit-by-pitch put two runners on before Wheeler contributed a RBI-single to centerfield. After a Songco strikeout, a walk to load the bases, and a pitching change, Bauer contributed a two-RBI double. Roe collected his fourth RBI on the ensuing play, lining a pitch deep enough to right field to bring home Enos on a sacrifice fly.
UC Irvine put up seven more insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning en route to the victory. The seven-run inning was highlighted by a bases-loaded double from Deragisch to clear the bases, and a Fox pinch-hit triple to unload the bags once again.
LMU returns to action tomorrow when it visits UCLA for another midweek game at 6:00 p.m. The Lions will then welcome Portland to Page Stadium as they continue West Coast Conference play over the weekend.