Bulldogs sweep pair from MMC
LEBANON, Tenn. – Robert Post allowed just one hit in six innings and Cumberland belted six home runs in a doubleheader sweep of Martin Methodist, 14-5 and 9-1, Thursday at Ernest L. Stockton Field. With the victories the Bulldogs stayed in at least a tie for first place in the TranSouth with rival Trevecca, who was playing a late-afternoon twinbill at Union Univ.
Cumberland (30-21, 15-5 TSAC) scored 16 combined runs in the first two innings of the doubleheader, getting out to early leads for Post and Shawn Schaefer. CU scored twice in the first in the opener on an error and then plated seven runs in the second inning, including a triple from Matt Holliman and a three-run homer by Sam Kikla.
The Bulldogs plated five runs in the first inning of game two, including a three-run double from Kikla, RBI double by Eric Mull and a sacrifice fly from Clint Alexander. Holliman’s two-run homer to dead centerfield in the second inning staked the home team to a 7-0 advantage.
That was all Post (6-2) would need, as the righthander won his fifth straight decision. He allowed just one hit, an infield single to Rudy Lyles in the fifth inning, walked one and struck out five, facing just two batters over the minimum in six innings.
Schaefer (5-2) allowed just two earned runs on seven hits in six innings in game one, striking out two.
Jarrett Sellers (3-6) took the loss in the opener for the Redhawks, giving up nine runs, five earned, on five hits with three walks and two strikeouts in two innings. Cliff Hardy (5-2) suffered the defeat in game two, allowing eight runs on eight hits in four innings.
Kikla went 4-for-6 with three doubles, three runs scored and six RBIs in the twinbill. Alexander, Max Kautz and Mull all added four hits for the Bulldogs, with Kautz scoring five times in the two contests.
MMC scored a run in the first after a two-out double to leftcenter from Hardy. He scored on a pair of wild pitches by Schaefer.
The Bulldogs plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning without a hit. Kautz reached to leadoff on a throwing error by shortstop Brandan Palm. Matt Greener walked and both runners scored when MMC leftfielder Rudy Lyles dropped the high fly ball that everyone in the ballpark thought was leaving the yard.
In the second MMC’s Josh Swipas reached on an error by Greener at third. Lyles reached on a fielder’s choice and was picked off by Schaefer, but Mull’s throw hit Lyles in the back. Zach Byler then singled to center, plating Lyles.
CU answered with seven runs in the bottom of the inning, starting with a leadoff double from Alexander. Kyle West’s grounder to the rightside moved Alexander to third and Kautz was hit. Alexander scored on a balk and Holliman tripled down the rightfield line, plating Kautz.
Greener drew a walk and Michael Wheeler grounded into a fielder’s choice, plating Holliman. Swipas’ throw to second sailed into rightfield, putting runners on the corners before Kikla hit a three-run homer to rightcenter, his team-leading 11th of the season.
Mull doubled with two outs in the inning and scored on an Alexander single down the leftfield line, giving CU a 9-2 advantage.
The Redhawks plated another run in the third after a leadoff single from Kris Ruderer. Palm then reached on an error by Holliman at short. A fielder’s choice by Hardy put runners on the corners and Ruderer scored on a lineout from Adam Stooksberry.
The Bulldogs added to the lead in the third, with West doubling into rightcenter to leadoff. Holliman then hit a towering home run to rightcenter, his sixth of the season.
Greener followed with a single before Wheeler hit a missile into the trees in rightcenter for a 13-3 CU lead.
The Redhawks scored once in the fourth. Swipas doubled to rightcenter to leadoff and Lyles followed with a bloop single to left. Swipas moved to third on a flyout from Byler and scored on pinch-hitter Seth McConnell’s groundout.
MMC plated another run in the fifth after Hardy reached on a throwing error by third baseman Will Curry. He scored on a double to rightcenter by Hector Lora.
Mull led off the CU sixth with a solo homer to right, a line drive that easily cleared the wall, for the final Bulldog run in game one.
In the second game Kautz led off the first with a single and Greener reached on an error by third baseman Jordan Hedges. Wheeler then singled, loading the bases, before Kikla hit a bases-clearing double to rightcenter.
Fisher was hit and Mull followed with an RBI double. Alexander’s sacrifice fly to center plated Fisher for a 5-0 Bulldog advantage after one inning.
Kautz led off the second inning with a single and Holliman belted his second homer of the day, this one to dead centerfield, for a 7-0 CU lead.
Kautz hit a leadoff homer in the fourth for the Bulldogs, his fifth of the year. In the fifth Kikla doubled to leadoff, stole third and scored on Tyler Fisher’s sacrifice fly.
Cumberland plays a single game against Martin Methodist Friday at 1 p.m. to end the regular season. Senior Day activities for 18 players will be prior to the game.