NAIA National Championship Recap for May 23

Drew Saberhagen

Drew Saberhagen

Results from Day 2 of the NAIA Baseball National Championship in Lewiston, ID:

Southern Polytechnic 6, Campbellsville 5 (Campbellsville eliminated)

Southern Polytechnic, who came into the tournament ranked #5, got a home run in the top of the ninth by CF Josh Grooms to avoid a two-and-out exit. The Hornets trailed 4-3 going into the seventh, but they scored two runs in the top of the seventh on sacrifice flies by Grooms and DH Daniel Hester to take the lead for good. Grooms batted in four of the Hornets’ six runs.

The Tigers made it a one-run ball game in the bottom of the ninth on a sacrifice fly by RF Zach Townsend, but a strikeout and a ground out ended the game with the tying run on third.

Campbellsville’s Bryan Fuller got his third start of the season, and his streak of 21 consecutive scoreless innings came to an end in the top of the first, when 2B Jake Barrow scored on a ground out. Fuller went five innings, allowed three runs on seven hits, struck out five, and the game was tied 3-3 when he left.

Drew Saberhagen (Bret’s son) got his second pinch-hit single of the tournament in the eighth inning. He was used mostly as a pitcher during the season, and was 0-2 at the plate coming into this tournament.

Dustin Carder, who pitched two scoreless innings, got the win for the Hornets, and Hunter Dinsmore got a save. Eric Mattos got the loss for the Tigers. The Tigers finished their season 39-12.

Box score play-by-play

Fresno Pacific 8, Embry-Riddle 6 (Embry-Riddle eliminated)

The Sunbirds trailed 6-1 going into the bottom of the sixth inning, but they got within striking distance with a three-RBI triple by 3B Joey Norwood, and Norwood scored on a wild pitch. The Sunbirds tied it 6-6 in the bottom of the seventh on an RBI single by RF Anthony Lowell. The game was still tied in the bottom of the ninth, and the Sunbirds won it with a two-run home run over the left field fence by pinch-hitter Dwight Nixon.

The Sunbirds out-hit the Eagles 12-11. Brian Oliver got it done on the mound for the Sunbirds. He entered the game in the seventh inning, allowed only one hit, walked one, and struck out four. He kept the Eagles from scoring to make the comeback possible. Aaron Varnum got the loss for the Eagles.

The Eagles finished the season 44-14. They were hurt by the loss of Austin Goolsby, who was injured during the sectional tournament. However, they gave up 18 runs during the tournament, so their problem was pitching.

Box score play-by-play

Lubbock Christian 11, Lee 0

Point Loma Nazarene made a statement yesterday; Lubbock Christian made one today. DH Tanner Rindels hit a solo home run in the top of the first, and a three-run home run in the top of the second. SS Armando Dominguez hit solo home runs in the sixth and seventh innings, and C Tyler Johnson hit a two-run home run in the third.

Rene Garcia started for the Chaparrals, went six innings, allowed only one hit, struck out three. Shane Karnback, Kevin Burns, and Shaun Greer each pitched an inning to complete the shutout. Rindels was 2-3 and four RBI for the game. Joel Matthews got the loss for the Flames.

Box score play-by-play

Story from NAIA official site: Lubbock Christian downs Lee 11-0 in impressive Series debut

Oklahoma City 10, Lewis-Clark State 8

The Stars led 6-5 after six innings. The Warriors took an 8-6 lead in the top of the eighth on a three-run home run by LF Sean Halton, but the Stars re-took the lead 10-8 in the bottom of the eighth when Brandon Moss came home when  1B Brent Weaver struck out, but took first because the catcher dropped the ball. The next batter, 3B B.J. Wheeler, hit a ball that hit an umpire, loading the bases. SS Kirk scored on a wild pitch, tying the game 8-8. RF Jason Machado then hit a two-RBI single, bringing in the winning run.

It wasn’t over yet. The Warriors loaded the bases with nobody out in the top of the ninth, on a hit batter and two walks. However, 2B Kyle Melton popped out to short, and SS Todd Muecklisch hit into a game-ending double play.

Warriors Head Coach Ed Cheff made a mistake filling out the lineup card, resulting in the loss of the DH for the Warriors. Starter Tom Peale and reliever Dustin Willis got their first turns at bat this season; they both went hitless, and Willis hit into a double play; Cheff used the re-entry rule to pinch-hit for Willis the next time around.

Dustin Williams got the win in relief for the Stars, and Brad Riddle got a save. Nick Masters got the loss for the Warriors.

Attendance: 4,980

Box score play-by-play

Schedule for Monday, May 25 (all times PDT):

8:30 AM: Fresno Pacific vs. Lee (loser out)

noon: Lewis-Clark State vs. Southern Polytechnic (loser out)

3 PM: Berry vs. Lubbock Christian

7 PM: Point Loma Nazarene vs. Oklahoma City
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All games are webcast by KOZE Radio (audio and free) and watchnaia.com (video and $6.95/game, or $23.95 for the series). Live stats are available for all games at Dakstats.