With their last Mid-South Conference (MSC) series of the season looming, the University of the Cumberlands (UC) baseball team hosted Virginia Intermont College on Monday, April 8th and Kentucky State University on Tuesday, April 9th in preparation for the weekend.
In Monday's contest against Virginia Intermont, the game went into the fourth scoreless until Intermont scored two runs to take the 2-0 lead. Cumberlands answered back in the bottom half as Charles Hyde (Fort Mitchell, KY) singled and later scored on a triple by Claudio Valencia (Yuma, AZ) to cut the lead to 2-1.
The Patriots tied the game in the sixth when Claudio hit an RBI single to score Victor Morel (New York, NY) who walked to start the inning. Intermont came back to take the lead scoring one in the eighth and three in the ninth for the 6-2 lead with UC down to their last at bat.
In the bottom of the ninth, the Patriots didn't go down without a fight as John Doolittle (Sharpsburg, GA) walked, Alberto Mejia (Santo Dominbo, Dominican Republic) was hit by a pitch, and Thomas Noll (Petersburg, KY) was hit by a pitch to load the bases with no outs.
After getting the next two UC batters out, Hibraim Cordova (Vega Baja, Puerto Rico) hit a hard groundball up the middle that was misplayed by the shortstop to allow a run to score to cut the lead to 6-3. Claudio Valencia then hit another RBI single to cut the lead to 6-4 and Jared Martin (Cynthiana, KY) was hit by a pitch to get another run across the plate to cut the lead to 6-5. However, the Patriots were unable to complete the comeback as the next batter struck out to end the game.
Jordan Cruz-Del Olmo (Miami, FL) got the start for UC going 3.2 innings allowing 2 runs on 7 walks with 4 strikeouts. Drew Morgan (Elizabethtown, KY; 0-1) came on in relief to go 4.1 innings allowing 1 unearned run on 2 hits with 2 strikeouts in a losing effort. Cameron Smith (Louisville, KY) came on in the ninth giving up 3 runs and Adam Biller (Bowling Green, KY) came on to finish the inning. The win went to Virginia's Stephen Harrison who went 7.2 innings allowing 2 runs on 6 hits.
In game one against Kentucky State the Patriots Donovan Feenstra (Calgary Canada; 2-1) had his best outing of the season as he took a no hitter into the fifth inning before giving up a single up the middle to centerfield. Donovan stayed focused though after giving up the hit to throw a complete game going 7 innings allowing 2 runs on 3 hits with 6 strikeouts as UC won 6-2.
The Patriots opened the game with Victor Morel scoring on an error by the third baseman after a single by Charles Hyde. UC extended the lead in the fourth by scoring 4 runs highlighted by a 2 RBI single by Victor Morel to take the 5-0 lead. Cumberlands would add one more in the sixth on a sac fly by Claudio Valencia. Kentucky State's only runs came in the seventh with the game out of reach.
The loss went to Kentucky State's Ryan Gardner who went 4 innings allowing 5 runs on 4 hits and 4 walks.
In game two UC fell behind 3-1 heading into the third but the offense returned to score 6 runs to take the 7-3 lead. The inning was highlighted by an inside the park homerun by Victor Morel and a 2 run homerun by Claudio Valencia.
Getting the start for UC was Quinton Warriner (Russell Springs, KY) who went 1.2 innings allowing 3 runs, 2 earned, on 5 hits. In relief was Keita Murakami (Wailuku, HI; 3-0) who went 3.1 innings giving up no runs with 3 strikeouts in a winning effort. Nick Bellman (Loveland, OH) closed out the game going 2 innings giving up 2 hits with 2 strikeouts. The loss went to Kentucky State's Drew Bennett.
The Patriots 22-16 (8-10 MSC) head into the weekend looking to move up in the standings as they travel to take on St. Catharine College for their final MSC series of the season on Friday, April 12th starting at 1:00 pm. The series will resume on Saturday, April 13th starting at 12:00 pm.
For more information on the University of the Cumberlands baseball team you can follow them on twitter at @uccoachshelton or visit the athletics website www.cumberlandspatriots.com.