CLINTON, S.C. – Army got runs in five of its first six at-bats on Saturday afternoon to total nine runs on nine hits, as it outpaced the Presbyterian College baseball team, 9-5, in game two of the series at the PC Baseball Complex in Clinton, S.C. PC falls to 10-11 on the year, while the Black Knights improve to 7-11.
How It Happened
Army got two runs in the first and one more in the third get out to an early 3-0 lead. Back-to-back two-out RBI singles from Matt Hudgins and John McCarthy in the first drove in the game’s first runs to give the Black Knights its first runs of the weekend. In the second, Ty Giovinco tripled to left center and scored on an errant throw by the shortstop that went in to the dugout, making it a 3-0 game.
PC responded with a run in the bottom of the second. TJ Richardson singled to lead off the inning and Nick Guimbarda followed with a walk to put two on with no outs. After a fielder’s choice kept two on with one out, Guy Casaceli singled to right to load the bases. Andrew Bladt was able to score Guimbarda from third with a fielder’s choice to cut the lead to 3-1.
After a scoreless third, Army plated runs in each of the next three innings to extend its lead. Kris Lindner delivered a two-out, two-run single through the right side in the fourth to plate the fourth and fifth runs of the game. A sacrifice fly to right by Alex Dickerson in the fifth made it a 6-1 game, driving in Hudgins after a leadoff single. Lindner managed another RBI single in the sixth and Hudgins followed later in the inning with a two-RBI single, as Army scored its final three in the inning to take a 9-1 lead.
Presbyterian would chip away at the lead with runs in each of its next three at-bats. Brett Auckland led off the sixth with a double to left center and two batters later Connor Slagill drove him in with an RBI single to score PC’s second run of the game. In the seventh, Tyler Weyenberg drove in Casaceli with an RBI single and AJ Priaulx later drove in Weyenberg with a sacrifice fly to center, cutting the lead to 9-4. Colton Chapman then hit his first home run of the season in the eighth with long solo shot to left to bring PC another run closer at 9-5.
The final three PC pitchers of the day, Hunter Kyzar, Ryan Hall and Connor Jahn, combined to throw 3.0 scoreless innings in relief without allowing a hit and managing three strikeouts against a lone walk. The Blue Hose were unable to rally in the ninth, though, as Daniel Gibbons allowed just a two-out single in the final inning.
Pitchers of the Record
Army starter Jeremy Mortensen (1-3) picked up his first win of the year, allowing four runs on nine hits in 6.2 innings of work with one walk and four strikeouts.
PC starter Tanner Chock (0-3) was tagged with the loss, allowing five runs (four earned) on six hits in 4.0 innings with three strikeouts against a pair of walks.
Player of the Game
Brett Auckland continued his strong work of late, going 2-for-5 with a double and a run scored on the afternoon. It was his second straight multi-hit game, after going 3-for-4 on Friday, and helped raise his average to .333 on the season. He has scored at least one run in each of his last three games now and reached base in each of his last six games.
- AJ Priaulx and Connor Slagill both went 2-for-4 with a run in the game, batting in the third and fourth spots, respectively. Priaulx regained the team-lead in batting average at .370, while Slagill recorded his first multi-game of the year in just his second start of the year.
- Guy Casaceli also went 2-for-4 with a run in the win for his first multi-hit game of the season.
- Colton Chapman homered for the first time this season with a nice drive of the fence in left field. Chapman entered the game as a defensive replacement, seeing his first career action at catcher, and 1-for-2 with the homer, a run and an RBI.
PC and Army will wrap up the series on Sunday with the rubber match scheduled for 11 a.m. at the PC Baseball Complex.