LSUS moves step closer to GCAC championship
May 05, 2006
May 5, 2006
By Brian Vernellis
LSUS moved into the championship bracket of the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference tournament with a commanding 11-2 win over William Carey College at LSUS on Thursday.
The Pilots needed a few innings to get its offense on track in the opening game of the GCAC tournament Wednesday, but they pounced on the Crusaders from the first at-bat.
"We're playing pretty well," LSUS head coach Rocke Musgraves said. "We're beginning to peak at the right time, so there's no reason to think we can't continue this.
"Our defense has been phenomenal lately and (pitch coach Andy Heckman) and the pitching staff deserve a lot of the credit."
Dusty Maddox's grand-slam home run capped a nine-run first inning. Maddox's homer was only the second hit of the inning as the Pilots sent 13 batters to the plate and benefited off Crusaders' starter Dustin Cook's shaky start.
Cook lasted 2-3 of an inning, gave up four earned runs and plunked two Pilots before reliever Alec Alcoin replaced him. Alcoin didn't fare any better, unable to retire a Pilot hitter.
Reliever Scott Mitchell subbed for Alcoin and surrendered Maddox's home run, the first hitter he faced.
The hit batsmen set an uneasy tone that reached a peak in the fifth inning.
In the fifth, both benches emptied when LSUS pitcher Matt Clayman hit third baseman Steven Johnson in the helmet. Johnson was the second Crusader Clayman hit in the helmet. He also plunked catcher Martin Roark in the fourth.
Umpires quickly sent the teams back to their dugouts before the incident escalated to trouble, but the incident was not without casualties.
Clayman was ejected from the game, along with Musgraves who received an automatic ejection.
Seven members of William Carey were tossed -- three coaches and four players.