March 16, 2013

Pacific Baseball Posts 5-2 Win At Creighton

Omaha, Neb. - The Pacific baseball team executed all game long, manufacturing runs early and tacking on late for a 5-2 win over Creighton Saturday at TD Ameritrade Park.

Senior SS Dustin Torchio drove in two runs while the bottom of the order - sophomore RF Taylor Murphy, freshman LF Gio Brusa and sophomore CF Tyler Sullivan each went two-for-four.

Kyle Crawford provided a long stint out of the Tigers' bullpen, as he teamed with starter Cory Popham (2-0) to hold Creighton to two earned runs, while freshman RHP Kevin Hammann recorded the final out for his first save.

The Tigers recorded 11 hits on the afternoon while improving to 6-11. Creighton falls to 9-4 overall.

Pacific picked up a run in the first as DH Brett Sullivan walked and advanced first to third on a sacrifice bunt by junior 3B Curtis Gomez. Gomez laid the bunt down towards the third base side of the mound, and Sullivan saw the vacated base and out-raced the third baseman to the bag. Torchio followed with a sacrifice fly for a 1-0 lead.

Creighton knotted the game at one on a one-out single in the second by 1B Reagan Fowler, a stolen base a walk and an RBI single by C Kevin Lamb.

After Popham escaped a bases-loaded jam in the third, Pacific picked up two runs in the fifth.

Brusa led off with a double to center and Tyler Sullivan beat out a bunt attempt to set up first and third. Brett Sullivan delivered a sacrifice fly down the left field line, with Tyler Sullivan taking second base. Sullivan took third on a fly out to right by Gomez and trotted home an an RBI single by Torchio.

Popham allowed a leadoff single in the fifth, but retired the next three in order to qualify for the win. Crawford entered in the sixth and threw zeros into the ninth.

In the Pacific seventh, Brett Sullivan singled with one out, aggressively took second and third on a pair of pitches in the dirt, and scored on an RBI single by Gomez past the drawn-in infield. Gomez advanced to second on a groundout to first by Torchio and redshirt sophomore 1B Erik Lockwood added a single to right for the fifth Pacific run.

Crawford took the mound for the bottom of the ninth and struck out the first batter, but was touched for a double to right center by LF Brad McKewon. Crawford coaxed a grounder to first by the next two batters. The first was handled for out number two, but the second hit the edge of the bag and caromed past Lockwood and into right field for a run-scoring single.

Crawford tossed another infield grounder, but an infield error set up first and third. With a 5-2 lead and two away, Hammann was summoned from the bullpen and rolled over SS Alex Staehely for a game-ending fielder's choice.

Popham's final line was five innings, six hits, one earned run and four strikeouts in his second win. Crawford earned a hold with 3.2 innings, one earned and five hits. Hammann's save was the first by the Tigers this season.

After splitting the first two games, the Tigers will go for the series victory on Sunday. First pitch is at 1 p.m. CT, 11 a.m. PT.