For Immediate Releas
Baseball -- April 1, 2011
Pitching Lifts Principia Over Red Devils in Series Opener
ELSAH, Ill. – Principia junior starting pitcher Greg Ball fired 8.0 innings and didn’t allow a hit until the eighth inning, leading the Panthers to an 11-1 victory over the Eureka College baseball team in the opener of the three-game weekend St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference series, Friday night in Elsah, Ill.
A two-run single off the bat of Principia’s Alan Cheatham in the bottom of the first inning gave the hosts an early 2-0 lead and proved to be all the offense Ball would need. Ball didn’t allow a Red Devil to reach base until he issued a one-out walk to Eureka senior second baseman Aaron Tolson (Peoria, Ill./Peoria Christian H.S.) in the top of the fifth inning.
While Ball was busy keeping the Red Devils (4-11, 0-3 SLIAC) off the basepaths, the Principia offense slowly built a large lead, scoring runs in five of the first six innings to lead 9-0. Eureka finally got into the hit column in the top of the eighth when freshman pinch hitter Ethan Minich (Peoria, Ill./Woodruff H.S.) collected a leadoff single and later moved into scoring position with his first career stolen base. Three batters later, after a hit batsman and a walk, junior center fielder Michael Hammerstrand (Bloomington, Ill./Bloomington H.S.) lifted a sacrifice fly to right field to score Minich from third base to get Eureka on the board.
The Panthers (7-6, 1-3 SLIAC) ended the game in the bottom half of the inning via the SLIAC’s 10-run rule when Matt Bowman smashed a two-run home run for the Panthers’ abbreviated 11-1 win.
Ball allowed only Minich’s hit and the sacrifice fly from Hammerstrand over 8.0 innings, striking out 12 and walking only two. The Panthers pounded out 13 hits on the night, including a game-high three from first baseman Robbie Nickell. The win was the Panthers’ first league victory of the season after dropping three straight SLIAC contests at Spalding last weekend.
Eureka sophomore starting pitcher John Berns (Herscher, Ill./Herscher H.S.) tossed 6.0 innings for the Red Devils and took the loss.
The Red Devils and Panthers will conclude their three-game SLIAC series Saturday with a noon doubleheader in Elsah.
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