LMU Firing on All Cylinders in 13-1 Victory at No. 18 San Diego
LMU scored early and often and got a complete-game effort from freshman Colin Welmon.
May 11, 2012
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The LMU baseball team (22-22, 10-6 WCC) was firing on all cylinders on Friday at No. 18 San Diego (37-12, 13-6 WCC), defeating the first-place squad by a count of 13-1. The 13 runs are the most the Lions have scored this year, while the 17 hits were one shy of the season-high. LMU scored early and often, including eight times in the third, en route to taking an 11-0 lead after four. LMU, which also received a complete-game effort from freshman Colin Welmon, is now 2-1 against ranked-opponents this year, and has won the last two contests against ranked-foes.
Alex Guthrie and Colton Plaia each had three hits on Friday to lead the LMU offense. Guthrie went 3-for-6 with a double, a homer and two RBI, while Plaia was 3-for-6 with three RBI and a run scored. Senior Shon Roe scored three times as part of a 2-for-3 day, while Cullen Mahoney also went 2-for-3, including a two-run homer to guide him to three RBI.
Although partially overshadowed by the offense, Welmon was outstanding as LMU's starting pitcher. The right-hander from Tustin, Calif. answered the challenge against the WCC's best offense, dealing his first career complete game and allowing just one run on five hits with a career-high tying six strikeouts. Welmon faced just four over the minimum and allowed the lone run in the bottom of the ninth, benefitting from a pair of double plays. With the victory, Welmon improved to 6-3.
USD starter Paul Sewald lasted just four innings, allowing 11 runs (seven earned) on 11 hits to take the loss and fall to 8-2. He entered the game with a 1.99 ERA, but LMU came out swinging to tag him with the loss. Max Homick did well in relief of Sewald, tossing the final five innings and allowing two runs to save the Torero bullpen and eat up innings.
LMU came out swinging on Friday, scoring once in the first and once in the second. Zac Fujimoto singled with one out in the first before coming around to score on a fly ball from Plaia. A Mitchell Esser leadoff single in the second got things going in the right direction for LMU before a sacrifice bunt from Roe and a Mahoney single put runners at the corners. Scott Harkin came up with a clutch two-out single two hitters later, lacing a pitch off the glove of Andrew Daniel at shortstop to bring home the second Lion run. Daniel committed a pair of errors in the game, leading to four unearned runs charged to Sewald.
LMU exploded for eight runs in the third, sending 13 hitters to the plate and recording five hits. Fujimoto singled to second base to start the inning before Guthrie belted his second homer of the year over the wall in left field to plate the first two. Plaia singled on the ensuing play before a walk and a single from Roe loaded the bases. Sewald got himself in trouble on the ensuing play, walking in a run, before Nick Devian lifted a sacrifice fly to right field to run the tally to 6-0. A hit-by-pitch and another bases-loaded walk, this one to Matt Lowenstein, stretched the lead to 7-0. With Guthrie at the plate for the second time in the inning an out later, Daniel was charged with his first error, allowing Mahoney to come home to score the unearned run. Plaia made the error hurt even more, lacing a two-RBI single back up the middle to cap the scoring run and leave LMU with a 10-0 lead after three.
A Roe double and the second error charged to Daniel allowed the 11th Lion run to score in the fourth before Mahoney connected on his second homer of the year with Roe aboard in the sixth pushed the Lion advantage to 13-0 headed into the bottom of the sixth.
Welmon put the Toreros down in order in the sixth, seventh, and eighth, and were it not for an error charged to Guthrie in the fifth, the right-hander would have faced the minimum from the second through eighth. USD managed to scrape a run across in the bottom of the ninth when Austin Bailey doubled and came in to score on a fielder's choice, but the run was far too little and too late as Welmon locked up his first career complete game in his 13th career start.
LMU and San Diego will continue the three-game series tomorrow at 1 p.m.