Liberty Completes Sweep Of Herd With 5-3 Win
LYNCHBURG, Va. - The Liberty University pitching staff held the Thundering Herd to three runs on seven hits to complete the three-game sweep, taking a 5-3 win Monday at Worthington Stadium.
The Flames (12-3) jumped out to an early 3-0 lead. With two men on and one out in the bottom of the third, Jeff Brown, who recorded six RBI's in Saturday's game for LU, doubled to left to score the first run of the game. Next in the order was Aaron Grijalva, who hit a sacrifice fly to center to bring in the second run of the game. In the fourth, the Flames threatened again, loading up the bases with one out. After recording the second out, pitcher David Slovak (Louisville, KY) dropped a throw from first baseman Roddy Stieger (Westchester, OH) for an error, which scored another run for the Flames.
Marshall's (2-10) offense, held to only two hits over the first five innings, finally got on the board in the top of the sixth. Adam Ptacek (Assaria, KS) led the inning off with his second hit of the day. Brent Mason (Sherwood, AR) followed that up with a double to left to bring in Ptacek. Aaron Jamieson (Lindsay, Ont.) hit into a fielder's choice, but was safe on an error by the Liberty third baseman. Mason scored on the play to bring the Herd within a run of the Flames.
Liberty grabbed both runs right back in the bottom of the inning, recording five hits and two runs in the inning. Michael Just and Grijalva had RBI singles in the inning to put their lead back at three runs.
MU made a last minute attempt to come back in the ninth. Bubba Pfaff (Florence, CO) walked to start the inning, and was followed by a single by Stieger. With one out, Nick Wolle (Coatesville, PA) hit into a fielder's choice to score Pfaff and cut Liberty's lead to two, but LU pitcher Phillip Thompson was able to record the final two outs and give Liberty the win.
David Slovak pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on nine hits. He struck out three and walked four. Slovak took the loss, dropping to 0-3 on the season. Mike Marchyshyn (Markham, Ont.) pitched the final 2 1/3, giving up four hits. David Bechtold went seven innings for Liberty and took the win, improving to 4-0. Thompson earned the save for Liberty, his first of the season.
Aaron Levinson (Seattle, WA), Ptacek and Mason recorded two hits each to lead the team. Wolle and Mason were credited with one RBI apiece.
Dayton is up next for the Herd. The teams will square off on Thursday afternoon at 2 p.m. in Dayton before returning home for a weekend series against St. Bonaventure.