On Wednesday, March 27th University of the Cumberlands (UC) baseball team hosted Berea College at Doyle Buhl Stadium. Both teams came out swinging, combining for 24 hits in a thrilling contest as the Patriots were able to pull away in for a 9-3 victory.
Cumberlands jumped on top 4-0 early scoring 2 runs in both the second and third innings. In the second John Dolittle (Sharpsburg, GA) and Jake Goodman (Elizabethtown, KY) walked to start the inning that was followed by a single from Ryan Palenzuela (Miami, FL) to load the bases. Another walk to Ryan Johnson (Goodlettsville, TN) allowed a run to score and a groundball by Jared Martin (Cynthiana, KY) got another run on the board.
In the third inning Claudio Valencia (Yuma, AZ) started the inning with a triple to the right centerfield gap. Blake Debacher (Miami, FL) came to the plate next and launched a 2 run homerun deep to left field.
The Patriots starter Donovan Feenstra (Calgary, Canada) went the first three innings allowing no runs on 3 hits with 4 strikeouts. In relief was Duncan Kaai-Ebert (Kapolei, HI; 2-1) who threw 2 innings allowing 3 unearned runs on 5 hits in picking up the win.
Berea was able to cut the Patriots lead to 4-3 in the fifth with two outs when an error by UC second baseman allowed the inning to continue. The Eagles collected three straight hits to get on the board.
UC answered back in the bottom half to extend the lead to 5-3 on a double by John Doolittle scoring Blake Debacher who doubled to start the inning.
In the sixth the Patriots added three more on a double by Charles Hyde (Fort Mitchell, KY) who scored on a single by Claudio Valencia, a wild pitch allowed Hibraim Cordova (Vega Baja, Puerto Rico) to score after walking, and a double by John Doolittle scored Valencia.
Cumberlands would go on to add one more in the eighth for a final score of 9-3.
Cameron Smith (Louisville, KY) pitched a scoreless sixth striking out 2, Jordan Crus-Del Olmo (Miami, FL) pitched a scoreless seventh, Keith Prowse (Charlotte, NC) pitched a scoreless eighth, and Claudio Valencia pitched a scoreless ninth.
“This was a good midweek win for our guys,” said Head Coach Brad Shelton. “The pitching staff did a nice job scattering 12 hits and allowing no earned runs against a good hitting Berea team. We hit the ball hard the entire game. We did a great job of bouncing back to score after Berea made it 4-3.”
The Patriots now sit at 19-12 (4-8 MSC) as they head into the weekend for a three game series against Mid-South Conference (MSC) foe Shawnee State University. Game one of the series is Friday, March 29th starting at 4:00 pm with game two of the series resuming on Saturday, March 30th 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 http://www. cumberlandspatriots.com.