LEBANON, Tenn. – Anthony Boix hit a grand slam in the second inning and a three-run shot in the fourth, driving in seven runs and leading 18th-ranked Tennessee Wesleyan to a 14-9 victory over seventh-ranked Cumberland on a windy day in Athens, Tenn.
Cumberland (7-6) hit five home runs in the game but allowed four by TWC (12-5), who won for the seventh straight time. Tennessee Wesleyan scored five times in the second, four more runs in the fourth and three times in the sixth to take a 12-3 advantage and never looked back.
Stephen Branca went 3-for-3 with three runs scored and three RBIs and Jordan Guidad added three hits and two RBIs for TWC, who banged out 16 hits against four Bulldog hurlers. Zach Fleshman (3-0), the second of two TWC pitchers, picked up the victory, giving up three runs on five hits in 4.2 innings.
Sam Lind hit a pair of homers for CU, collecting three hits and three RBIs and scoring three times. Josh McGee also homered and posted three hits, while Craig Monson and Antonio Butler also homered for the Bulldogs.
Cody Ferrell (1-1) was roughed up on the mound, allowing nine runs on seven hits in 3.1 innings. The lefthander walked three and struck out four.
The Bulldogs scored three times in the second to take an early lead against TWC starter Corey Rhoney.
McGee homered to leadoff the inning before Tyler Wheeler was hit. Monson followed with a two-run shot and the 3-0 edge. The lead was short-lived, as the home team answered with five runs in the bottom of the inning.
Taylor Oldham led off with a homer before one-out singles from Guida and Dale Ricketts. With two outs Travis Burnside walked before Boix hit a grand slam to rightcenter for a 5-3 TWC advantage.
In the fourth Ricketts walked and Thomas Sicking singled, putting runners on the corners. Boix followed with a three-run shot to right. A walk to Branca chased Ferrell from the game and Jake Stone’s RBI single gave Wesleyan a 9-3 lead.
Lind singled in the Bulldog fifth and scored on McGee’s two-out single to left.
Burnside and Boix both singled to start the sixth and Branca plated a run with a double to rightcenter. Tanner Quirk was hit with two outs before a two-run single from Guida.
CU scored twice in the seventh, starting with a one-out homer down the rightfield line from Lind. Nick Sydnor then singled and Wheeler walked before a two-out RBI single from Brodie Ross.
But TWC answered with two runs in the bottom of the inning, with Boix drawing a two-out walk before Branca blasted a two-run homer to rightcenter.
In the eighth Butler hit a solo homer, Cory Urquhart followed with a walk and Lind ended the scoring with a two-run homer to rightcenter.
Cumberland begins TranSouth Conference play this weekend against Mid-Continent University. Stay tuned to GoCumberlandAthletics.com for more information on series days and times with the threat of bad weather on Friday and Saturday.