Pilots take two of three from Blazers and win season series four games to two
April 22, 2006
Shreveport, LA---The LSUS Pilots (31-19, 16-11) outscored the Belhaven College Blazers (34-16, 17-10) 21-8 in the three game series that concluded with the Pilots taking two of three games to pull within one game of the Blazers in the Gulf Coast Athletic Conference standings. The Pilots stranded 10 base runners in game one of Saturdays double header which the Blazers won by a final score of 5-3. However, the Pilots responded in game three with an 8-3 victory taking the weekend series 2-1, and the season series four games to two, which gives the Pilots the upper hand in a tie-breaker situation at the end of the regular season.
In game one, Buddy Wyrick hit a fly ball to left-center field with one out in the top of the fourth that was lost in the sun by Pilots center fielder Dusty Maddox allowing Wyrick to reach third base on a triple. Shawn Anderson followed with a single to center field off Pilot starter Matt Clayman (6-3) to score Wyrick to open the scoring. Clayman was able to get Josh Parks to pop out to third for the second out of the inning, but a hit by pitch and a two RBI double to left-center field by pinch hitter Forrest Rollins stretched the Blazer lead to 3-0. Lead off hitter David Gilbert followed with a bloop single to left field to score Rollins and cap off the Blazers four run 4th.
LSUS answered with a run in the bottom of the 4th after doubles by Steffan Primeaux and Riley Cook to cut the lead to 4-1.
The two teams traded solo-runs in the 6th, making the score 5-2 before the Pilots mounted a last inning rally. Maddox doubled off the left-center field fence to start the bottom of the 7th which spelled the end for Blazers starter Thomas Royals (7-4) who gave way to Larkin Braxton in relief.
Braxton received a called third strike against Tyler Williams for the first out of the inning before allowing a single to Primeaux which brought the tying run to the plate in Colin Moro. Braxton caught Moro looking at strike three for the second out which brought Cook to the plate. Cook delivered a single to center for his third hit of the ball game which scored Maddox and cut the lead to 5-3. With a 2-2 count, Pilot catcher Brent Lavallee fell victim to a called third strike which ended the Pilot rally, and gave the Blazers a 5-3 win.
Royals allowed 10 hits through 6.0 innings but allowed just three runs before giving way to Braxton who was credited with the save. Bryan Bennett, Wyrick, and Gilbert each collected two hits a piece.
Clayman was tagged with the loss after completing 4.1 innings and allowing five runs on seven hits. Daniel Welch finished the final 2.1 innings and surrendered just one hit while striking out two.
Cook led the Pilots with a 3-4 effort which included a game high three RBI. Primeaux and Moro each added two hits and a run scored in the losing effort.
The Pilots responded in game two with three runs in the bottom of the 1st inning off BC starter Matt Lawrence (3-3). Dustin Bissonnette greeted Lawrence with a double to right-center field which was followed by an RBI triple by Maddox to open the scoring. Tyler Williams followed with an RBI single to right, and scored on an RBI single by Moro which capped off the inning.
Pilot starter JV Laffitte (4-1) struggled early but managed to escape a bases loaded jam with a strikeout on Austin Fagan which put the end to the Blazers two run rally. Laffitte was lifted in the 4th by Welch after allowing two runs on five hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
LSUS took advantage of a dropped fly ball by right fielder Josh Parks which allowed Lavallee to reach base and advanced Cook who single earlier to advance to third. Brandon Magierowski delivered a sacrifice fly to center field to score Cook making the score 4-2. Cooksey followed with a single to center which allowed pinch runner Jacob Watkins to reach third. Watkins scored from third on a wild pitch which stretched the Pilots lead to 5-2.
BC brought on reliever Robert Young in the 5th who allowed three runs on just two hits and two BC errors which put game three out of reach as the Pilots went on to win by a final score of 8-3 to take the series.
Ricky Owens led the Blazers offensively with two hits while Gilbert and Wyrick each added a hit and an RBI. Lawrence was credited with the loss after allowing five runs (four earned) on six hits in 4.0 innings of work.
The combination of Welch and Tyler Lewis out of the Pilots bullpen scattered just one run on three hits through the last four frames. Cook continued his hot hitting of late with a 2-3 performance which included a run scored and an RBI. Maddox added an RBI triple and two runs scored while teammate Moro was 1-2 with two RBI.
The Pilots now stand alone in second place of the GCAC standings at 16-11, one game behind the Blazers (17-10) heading into the final weekend of the regular season. LSUS will travel to Mobile, AL to take on the University of Mobile Rams, while the Blazers will be up against the Spring Hill College Badgers.