Eagles Take Two Against No. 6 Point Park
WILMORE, Ky. – Asbury won two of three against No. 6 Point Park to open conference play on Friday. The Eagles bounced back after dropping game one 5-1 before winning game two 6-4 and game three 5-4. The fourth game in the series is scheduled for 11 am on Saturday. Three games were played to try and avoid the pending rain.
Tyler Messner provided the heroics in game three, beating the drawn-in infield with a liner down the third base line to score Dallas Murphy from third. Murphy led off the inning by beating out an infield single and moved to second on a sac bunt by Jordan Cox. He advanced to third on a wild pitch before Messner knocked him in. Messner finished the game with two hits and three RBI.
The Eagles (9-21, 2-1 KIAC) got on the board first, scoring two runs in the first as Messner drove in two with a bases-loaded single to center. Asbury pieced together five hits in the third culminating with a run-scoring single by Cox and Matt Mitchell. That gave AU a 4-1 lead, a lead they held till the sixth.
Point Park finally got to Logan Howard in the sixth scoring two runs to cut the lead to 4-3. The Pioneers (8-9, 1-2 KIAC) tied the game in the seventh off of Micah Pace (2-2) but he picked up the win after Messner’s heroics. Pace pitched 1.2 innings in relief and struck out two. Howard went 5.1 innings and allowed just five hits and three runs, two earned. Four Eagles had multi-hit games besides Messer as the Eagles pounded out 12 hits. Simeon Bell, Jared Hahn, Dallas Murphy and Matt Mitchell all picked up a pair of hits in game three.
In game two Asbury again jumped on the Pioneers early, scoring three in the first, putting together four hits including an RBI single by Murphy. They also scored on a sac fly from Jordan Cox and a wild pitch. Point Park answered with three runs of their own in the top of the second, tying the game at 3-3. A dropped fly ball in right-center allowed two to score before a triple from Don McDuffee tied the game.
The Eagles took the lead for good with two runs in the fourth and followed that up with another in the fifth. Matt Cox knocked in a run in the fourth on a fielder’s choice and Hahn singled in a run later in the inning. Back-to-back doubles by Simeon Bell and Jordan Cox added the insurance run in the fifth.
Point Park scored their final run in the sixth as Tom Pasinski doubled with one out and was followed by Crowell’s single. Zach Settle escaped the inning with no further damage and retired the Pioneers in order in the seventh for his first collegiate win. Settle (1-2) also recorded his first complete game and struck out a career-high seven. He gave up just five hits and four runs, one earned and walked two. Settle’s seven strikeouts are a season-high for an Eagle pitcher as are the seven innings pitched.
The Eagles collected 10 hits in game two, including two each from Murphy, Hahn and Jordan Cox. Asbury has 10 or more hits in 10 games this season and four of their last six. They have won five of six and are 4-0 during that stretch when collecting 10 or more hits. The Eagles are 7-4 overall at home this year.
Game one was quite a bit different than the final two of the day. Sean Clark mowed down the Eagles over five innings, giving up just three hits and striking out five. He didn’t walk a batter and the lone run was unearned.
Point Park took the early lead in this game, scoring a single run in the first. Asbury tied it at 1-1 in the fourth as Tyler Messner singled in Murphy who reached on an error. The Pioneers took control in the fifth, touching up Isaiah Bell for three runs in the inning and knocking him out of the game. Bell (0-7) allowed four runs over 4.2 innings. He gave up nine hits, three walks and struck out four.
The teams will try to finish out the four-game conference series on Saturday with a final game starting at 11 am, weather pending.