Pilots claim 2005 GCAC title with sweep over Rams
April 16, 2005
SHREVEPORT, La. – The LSUS Pilots had a job to do on Saturday and they did it well. Coming into Saturday’s double header against the University of Mobile Rams, the Pilots had to win the remaining two games of the three game series so they could clinch the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference outright after winning game one of the series 8-6 Friday night. They did their job just the way they should have by winning Saturday’s first game 7-3 behind a solid pitching performance by Derek Cunningham, and picking up an 11-1 victory in five innings to complete the sweep, and wrap up the 2005 GCAC regular season title.
Cunningham (7-1) pitched the first contest of the day for LSUS and had a shutout through six innings. While trying to finish the game in the seventh, Cunningham gave up three runs off two hits. However, the starter ended the game on a high pop-fly to shortstop Brandon Magierowski and picked up his seventh win of the season.
In that game, the Pilots offense exploded for 6 runs in the first inning to give Cunningham some early breathing room. The LSUS lineup batted around, scoring six runs on three hits while taking advantage of two walks and a crucial error by the Rams shortstop, Eduardo Davilla. After fielding a ground ball by Pilots Patrick Thompson with the bases loaded, Davilla made an errant throw which found its way into the Pilots dugout, allowing Chris Frye and Kyle Mace to score, putting the Pilots up 4-0. Bryan Cooksey followed with an RBI sacrifice fly to score Brandon Magierowski, and Colin Moro followed with a fielders choice to score Magierowski and give the Pilots a 6-0 lead after the first.
LSUS did not score again until the bottom of the sixth when pinch hitter Riley Cook batted-in Chase Cox, who landed on base due to a single.
Kyle Mace ended the first game 1-4 with an RBI and a double. Magierowski was 1-3 with an RBI single and Brent Lavallee had a single.
In the second game of the day and third game of the series, all eyes were on starting LSUS pitcher Kevin Jewell as he had the opportunity to clinch the regular season title with a win. Jewell stepped up the challenge, mowing down the Ram line-up and allowing one run off four hits in five innings while collecting his team high 7th win of the season.
The game was halted after five innings due to the 10-run rule as the Pilots managed to score 10 runs by tacking on two runs in the third, seven in the fourth and two more in the fifth.
The seven-run inning was started off with an error by Mobile’s second baseman, which allowed Magierowski aboard safely. Thompson followed with a double and Cooksey singled to score Magierowski and advance Thompson to third who then scored on a wild pitch.
Pilot catcher Brent Lavallee doubled to center to move the runners up and hot-hitter Maddox was intentionally walked to face GCAC player of the week Dustin Bissonnette. He reached safely on a fielder’s choice that allowed a run to score. Frye got to first base after an error by Mobile’s third baseman, which then let Maddox score.
Mace walked and then Magierowski singled to left for two RBIs and Thompson picked up an RBI with his single.
The Pilots were looking for two runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to complete the sweep of the series and they accomplished that when lead-off batter and pinch hitter Scott Talley got on base after being hit by a pitch. Maddox flied out to deep left field but Bissonnette picked him up by hitting a hard single to left.
Frye kept things alive with an RBI double. Mace stepped up to the plate with one out and one runner on and sacrifice flied to the center fielder to score Frye, who tagged from third base.
Frye ended the game 3-4; Thompson went 2-3; Cooksey finished 2-3 and Lavallee went 1-1.
The Pilots (36-10, 20-4) will play again on Tuesday against 3# Houston Baptist University in a 4 p.m. double-header.
By Chrissy Chiri
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