Late-Inning Heroics Hand LMU 5-4 Victory Over Gonzaga
LMU trailed 3-0 after two innings, but chipped away en route to the victory.
April 27, 2012
SPOKANE, Wash. - LMU (20-17, 8-5 WCC) trailed 3-0 after two innings, but chipped away at the deficit and eventually took a 6-5 lead into the bottom of the ninth to beat Gonzaga (26-13, 6-7 WCC) in the first game of a three-game series on Friday at Gonzaga's Patterson Baseball Complex.
Colton Plaia picked off a runner in the bottom of the seventh before leading off the eighth with his fifth home run of the year to tie the game at 4-4. Shon Roe, who connected on a game-winning home run to knock-off No. 8 Cal State Fullerton on Tuesday, picked-up another game-winner on Friday, singling-home the go-ahead run in the top of the ninth. Plaia finished 2-for-4 with the homer and two RBI, while Roe's only hit of the day proved to be one of the biggest.
Nick Devian also homered, finishing 2-for-3 with the round-tripper to knot the tally at three runs apiece in the sixth.
Freshman Colin Welmon lasted 5.2 innings as LMU's starter, allowing four runs on 11 hits before not factoring in the decision. Ryan Hawthorne dealt two-thirds of the eighth before earning the victory when Roe plated the run in the ninth. Hawthorne improved to 4-0 with the decision. Sophomore Bret Dahlson secured the save in the ninth despite allowing a pair of runners to reach, tallying his ninth save of the year.
Left-hander Tyler Olson took the loss after going 8.2 innings and allowing five runs on seven hits with 11 strikeouts. Olson fell to 4-1 after throwing 124 pitches and handing the ball over to Derek Peterson who allowed the game-winning hit. Gonzaga stranded 15 runners on base on Friday in the loss. Steven Halcomb went 3-for-5 to lead the Bulldog offense.
Gonzaga plated a pair of runs with two out in the first, getting a double from Clayton Eslick and RBI-singles from Alex Stanford and Andy Hunter. The lead stretched to 3-0 in the second when Halcomb lined a double down the left field line to plate Mitchell Gunsolus who singled earlier in the inning.
Zac Fujimoto put the Lions on the board in the fourth, singling-home Joey Boney to cut the deficit to 3-1. Boney reached with the first Lion hit of the day with two out as LMU pieced together three straight hits in the frame.
Plaia notched the first of his two RBI in the fifth to run the tally to 3-2, sending a RBI-single through the left side to bring home Roe. Devian's solo shot, the first of the year for the senior, managed to put the Lions even in the sixth.
Trying to maintain control, Gonzaga managed to plate a run of its own in the sixth, benefitting from a Royce Bolinger RBI-single off of Griffin on the first pitch of his at bat to reclaim the one-run lead.
After Plaia's heroic solo shot to knot the tally, LMU earned its first lead of the game in the ninth. Fujimoto singled through the left side before a sacrifice bunt and a Roe two-out RBI single off the second base bag allowed Fujimoto to turn third and score without a throw.
LMU and Gonzaga will continue the series tomorrow with a game at 7 p.m. The game will air live on ESPNU.