Lions Top Halos, 9-4 on Opening Day
Double-Play is turning point
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- Behind timely hitting and an effective pitching performance, the Southwestern Assemblies of God University baseball team began their new season with a 9-4 win over Hillsdale College.
Three pitchers combined on a seven hitter, yielding just two earned runs while uniting to strike out nine batters. A year ago the Lions dropped their first five games before collecting their initial win.
Michael Reeves (Ovilla, Tx / Ovilla Christian), a sophomore right-hander, 1-1 in 2010, had a good start according to Assistant Coach Clay Scarborough. He overcame a pair of two-out, unearned runs in the top of the first. While Reeves did hit four Hillsdale batters, his control rebounded, ringing up five strike outs.
The team held a 4-3 lead in the fourth when he ran into trouble. Nic Morgan (Ft. Worth, Tx / Boswell HS) came in to relieve and wasted little time. He coaxed a first-pitch grounder that was turned into an inning-ending double play.
"Reeves had a solid showing," Scarborough said. "He managed the game and departed with the lead."
As for Morgan extinguishing the fire, Scarborough said it proved to be the pivotal point of the game. "Morgan's first pitch offering was converted into a double play. It was really the key to the game," he added. "It changed the game."
From there the Lions put the game away with a four-run, fifth inning. Morgan (1-0) was credited with the win. He went two and two-third innings, striking out three.
Trevor Schexneider (Elizabethtown, Ky / Elizabethtown HS) finished the game by blanking the Saints. He struck out one and didn't surrender a hit.
Lions Hit Parade
Southwestern had an impressive effort at the plate. Ben Chavez (Roswell, NM / New Mexico Military Institute, Gateway HS) led an 11-hit attack with a 3-for-4 game, including an RBI. Cam Ward (Mansfield, Tx / Grace Prep), a senior Designated Hitter, drove in two with a double during a 2-for-3 game.
Dustin Jett (Patterson, La / Patterson HS) also produced a pair of ribbies while first baseman DuJuan Prater (Copperas Cove, Tx / Copperas Cove HS) scored three times and had two hits, including a double. Clean-up hitter Patrick Wherland (Petrolia, Tx / Petrolia HS) ripped an RBI double and Jared Denton (Mission, Tx / Sharyland HS) had two hits and a pair of runs. Denton snared a sinking liner in leftfield to end the second inning.
Addicted to Glove
Defensively, shortstop David Gomez (Arlington, Tx / Bowie HS) had four assists during an errorless night. Catcher Dominic Denney (Albuquerque, NM / La Cueva HS) led the defense with ten putouts.
Twinbill on Saturday
The two teams play a doubleheader on Saturday at the Waxahachie Sports Complex, beginning at noon. SAGU will send Jared Jones (Copperas Cove, Tx / Copperas Cove HS) to the hill in the first game and Chris Stanley (Harker Heights, Tx / Ellison HS) in the nightcap.