IRVING, Texas – The University of Dallas baseball team picked up its second doubleheader sweep in consecutive weekends and have won four-of-five contests after defeating Blackburn College in a pair of seven-inning finals Sunday.
Dallas took an early lead in game one thanks to a couple defensive miscues, and would break the game open with a six-run 6th. Seth Hanson (Apache Junction, Ariz.) highlighted the outburst with a three-run homer to left field.
In game two, the Crusaders responded to a 5-3 deficit in the 5th by immediately tying things. In the sixth, the home squad turned the momentum for good with back-to-back RBI doubles by Josh Abalos (Lewisville, Texas) and Nathan Patton (McKinney, Texas). Jordan Stickler (Grand Rapids, Mich.) – who reached base in every plate appearance in the twinbill – hustled from first base on the go-ahead run.
(Game 1) (Final 7 innings)
Team Scores: Blackburn (1), Dallas (9)
Team Records: Blackburn (1-7), Dallas (6-8)
Pitcher Records: W) Montemayor (2-1) L) Stepp (0-3)
Stickler started the Crusaders off with a walk. After Abalos reached on a fielder's choice, he would steal second and advanced to third on an error that got through to center field. Patton then reached on a misplayed ball at first that consequently got thrown away trying to get Abalos at the plate. Patton ended up at third, and scored on a groundout by Mark Peterson (Cincinnati, Ohio).
The Beavers committed three errors that inning, but finished with just four in the contest. Dallas did not have an error.
Things remained 2-0 until the bottom of the 5th. Dallas had only two hits up to that juncture, and Johnathan Stepp – the starting pitcher for Blackburn – had retired seven in a row.
Enrique Vigil (San Antonio, Texas) singled to left field to start the huge inning. Stickler walked, and the two sped over to third and second on a passed ball. After one out was made, Patton doubled to left center to score the pair. Peterson followed with his second RBI on a single to plate Patton. A few batters later with two on, Hanson was able to touch them all as he blasted a ball over the left field fence.
Tyler Montemayor (Boerne, Texas) threw his first complete game, keeping the Beavers in check most of the day. He yielded four hits on a run to go with three walks. The freshman struck out a season-high seven batters.
Stickler went 1-for-1 and drew three walks. Vigil tallied the lone multiple hit game on either side with a 2-for-3. Seven of the nine batters in UD's lineup crossed home once.
Blackburn was able to get a run in during the 6th on a sacrifice fly out to center by Ryan Steen. Nate Bassett, Walter Jarvis, and Tyler Durand formed the top three in the lineup that each recorded a hit. Stepp allowed eight runs (6 earned) on six hits to go with four walks and six strikeouts. Jake Lochhead pitched the 6th and added two punchouts to give the guests eight.
(Game 2) (Final 7 innings)
Team Scores: Blackburn (5), Dallas (7)
Team Records: Blackburn (1-8), Dallas (7-8)
Pitcher Records: W) Voss (3-2) L) Stepp (1-2)
In the second matchup, the Beavers took an early lead with a walk and consecutive singles starting the game. Jarvis had the RBI-single up the middle for the run scoring play. After that, UD's starter Jaime Wallace (Crocket, Texas) got an infield fly out and then double play ball to escape from further damage.
Stickler countered with his fourth walk overall in the series. The team-leader in stolen bases added two more with one of second and third. The next batter, Abalos, then was able to bring him home by grounding out to first to make it an even contest.
After allowing a run in the 3rd, the Crusaders were able to utilize their speed at the top of the order to create enough runs to gain their first lead of the game. Stickler continued to be the catalyst by beating out an infield single at short. Stickler did come up with three steals (tied career-high) on the day, but his presence kept the pitchers throwing over. One bad attempt allowed got away and allowed the leadoff hitter to scamper over to the other corner bag. Patton lofted a shallow pop fly towards center. The second baseman, Shane Lewis, came up with an incredible catch over the shoulder, but Stickler was able to knot the scoreboard. Abalos had walked after Stickler had gotten to third, and would make his way over that way for Peterson to drive him in on a sacrifice fly to deep center.
The Beavers were able to place their highest scoring inning together in the 5th to go up 5-3. Jarvis singled in a run, and an error allowed Christian Padilla to also score on the play to put them in front again. Wallace was lifted after Blackburn went back up, and Conrad Voss (Corona, Calif.) entered. A wild pitch allowed Nathan Bassett to count another run that frame.
Dallas posted a two-run response that tied the game again a half-inning later. Stickler bunted for a hit to third and stole second. After a walk, Stickler was caught stealing at third in a double steal attempt. An error put two runners on. Peterson and Zachary Taylor (Humble, Texas) drove in the runners in front of them to make it 5-5.
A quiet top of the 6th was next for Voss, and appeared to be the same for the Crusaders with two outs to start the home half. Then who else but Stickler beat out an infield dribbler to the pitcher. Abalos then ripped a ball to the right center gap. Stickler was sent home and beat the play to lift them on top for good. Abalos had advanced to third on the throw. Patton followed with the Crusaders only other extra base knock with a double to left.
An easy 7th that included a fly out to all three outfielders sealed the triumph to keep UD's home record unblemished at 5-0.
Voss picked up his third win and second in the past two series by throwing 2.2 innings of relief. He only allowed a hit and added a strikeout.
Jarrett Sandlin was saddled with the loss for Blackburn with only three earned runs surrendered on 11 hits. He walked and struck out five. In six innings, the right-hander threw 128 pitches.
Stickler led the offense with a 3-for-3 game and a walk. His only other perfect game with more hits was a 5-for-5 at Austin College last season (Mar. 19). He has also now reached base safely in 46 straight games played dating to last year.
UD's 11 hits marked the first time the team reached double-digits since the fifth game of the campaign versus Mississippi Univ. for Women.
Peterson and Scioli added 2-for-3 games, with hitters 2 through 5 in the lineup earning all the runs-batted-in. Abalos, Patton, and Peterson had two apiece.
Blackburn's Jarvis and Lewis recorded two-hit games and tallied the only ribbies with Jarvis gaining two. Brandon Smith added the other multi-hit game with a 2-for-3.
Finals | #UDCrusaders pick up Wins on Sunday! Offense put up 6 runs in 5th inn. of Game 1 to pull away! Back-to-back 2B's by Abalos and Patton lift team in game 2! | @UDallasBaseball #GoUD #UDBASE #d3b pic.twitter.com/3weUxzw9qc— UDallas Athletics (@UDallasSports) March 11, 2018
Dallas concludes the series on Monday with first pitch slated for 1 p.m.