LCSC hits its way past Concordia 12-6
LEWISTON, Idaho – Pat Murray drove in four runs and collected three hits to lead a Lewis-Clark State College hit parade that featured seven players with two or more hits as the Warriors belted Concordia University of Portland 12-6 at LCSC’s Harris Field on Thursday night.
LCSC, 37-3 overall, collected 18 hits in the game. The top four hitters in the lineup – Brian Gaylord, Josh Ashenbrenner, Brian Burke, and Murray – combined to go 9-of-16 with nine RBI and five runs scored.
Everyone, however, seemed to get in the act for LCSC as the No. 7-9 hitters – Gino Casini, Danny Anguiano, and Jason Hague, combined to go 7-of-13 with seven runs scored.
The offensive performance helped the NAIA’s top-ranked team LCSC overcome a somewhat rough start as Concordia, 9-28 overall, was able to jump out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the first on a three-run home run by Tommy Whalen, who drove in five runs on the night.
LCSC, however, scored the next 12 runs over the first five innings for a 12-3 lead and never looked back.
Murray helped LCSC to its first run in the first inning. After Gaylord singled and Ashenbrenner was hit by a pitch, Burke grounded into a double play. Murray, however, followed with a single to right to score Gaylord.
The Warriors added three runs in the second to take the lead for good at 4-3. Casini, Anguiano, and Hague all singled to load the bases with no outs. Gaylord dropped down a sacrifice bunt to score Casini and Ashenbrenner followed with an RBI single to right. When Concordia’s right fielder bobbled the ball, Hague also was able to score.
The Warriors put up three more runs in the fourth. Anguiano started the rally with a single, and a walk to Gaylord and a single by Ashenbrenner loaded the bases. The single by Ashenbrenner was his 200th hit in his LCSC career and allowed him to become only the 10th player in program history to reach that milestone. Burke followed with a walk to force in a run and Murray followed with a two-run single to left to make it 7-3.
LCSC broke the game open in the fifth with five runs on seven hits. As in the second inning, Casini, Anguiano, and Hague all singled to load the bases with no outs. Gaylord greeted Concordia relief pitcher Jake Pendergraft with a two-run double. A wild pitch then allowed Hague to score, while Ashenbrenner’s RBI ground out brought in Gaylord. Burke then doubled to right and scored on a single by Murray.
Concordia picked up a run in the sixth on a defensive mental lapse by LCSC when with a runner on third, Tim Reavis hit a high pop up foul in front of the first base dugout that attracted LCSC’s first baseman, catcher, and pitcher. Murray, the first baseman, called everyone off and made the catch, but with no one covering home, the baserunner was able to tag up at third and score. The play was ruled an infield sacrifice fly.
Whalen added a two-run double in the seventh to complete the scoring.
LCSC starter Tyler Lichty went to 4-0. He allowed eight hits and four runs over six innings, but struck out three. Zach Clanton finished the final 2.2 innings by retiring all eight batters he faced, including two by strikeouts.
Gaylord, Murray and Anguiano finished with three hits apiece, while Gaylord and Ashenbrenner drove in two runs.
In a schedule change, the two teams will now play a 3 p.m. doubleheader on Friday and a single game at noon on Saturday. The teams were originally scheduled to play the doubleheader on Saturday, but the weather forecast calls for a greater chance of rain on Saturday so the change was made.