May 19, 2006
Portland, Oreg. - Two walks and two balks broke a 3-3 tie in the top of the seventh to give LMU (22-32, 9-10 WCC) the 4-3 win over Portland (15-35, 3-16 WCC) Friday at Joe Etzel Field. Both teams had put up three runs in the first inning, only to remain scoreless until the seventh.
DeAndre Miller scored the first of three runs in the first inning for the Lions when he crossed the plate on a throwing error by Portland catcher Nik Kosach. Miller and Chris Pettit had drawn walks from Pilot starter Blaine Hardy and Miller then advanced to third on a fielder's choice ball by Erik Johnson.
Sean Dovel doubled to left to score Johnson, and Justin Bunkis followed with a single to center that plated Dovel to give the Lions the quick 3-0 lead.
But the Lions' lead was short-lived, as the Pilots answered with three runs of their own in the bottom of the same frame. Portland tied the score at three after four hits, including two doubles.
The score remained locked at 3-3 until the top of the seventh when two walks and two balks scored the go-ahead run for the Lions. Michael Glomb and Miller drew walks from Hardy, and then advanced on balks by reliever Joe Jones.
Hardy (2-4) was charged with the go-ahead run and suffered the loss after six and 1/3 innings of work.
LMU starter Brad Meyers tallied a career-high seven strikeouts after holding the Pilots to three runs in his seven and 2/3 innings of work. He improved to 8-4 on the season.
Melvin Blackmon and Lee Roberts followed in relief, with Roberts picking up his second save of the season after throwing the ninth.
Dovel entered the series needing just one double to enter the LMU single season record book for doubles. He did not make Lion fans wait long, as he doubled in his first at bat Friday for his 21st double of 2006. That mark equals Matt Riordan's 21 doubles in 1999 to tie the two for 10th all-time at LMU.
The Lions and Pilots will continue the three-game series Saturday and Sunday. First pitch Saturday will be 1:00 p.m., while Sunday's start has been moved up to 12 noon. Fans can catch the action of both games on Lions' All-Access at www.LMULions.com.