One game was a slugfest and the other was a pitching duel. The good news for St. Catharine College is that the Bat Pats won both of them in a doubleheader sweep Friday of Mid-South Conference foe UVA-Wise at Edelen-Haydon Field.
In the final day of the regular season, St. Catharine outlasted the Cavaliers in the opener 12-9. Then in the second game Timothy Reed (Tucson, Ariz.) tossed a gem as the Bat Pats, held to just one hit, won 1-0.
The sweep gives Luther Bramblett’s nine a 32-23 overall record and an 11-9 conference mark. They will take that record into the Mid-South Conference tournament where they will play at 2:00 next Thursday in a first round game against Shawnee State (31-22, 11-9). The Patriots opened the conference schedule in early March with a three game sweep of the Bears.
Friday’s victories broke a five game losing skid for St. Catharine who grabbed a 12-3 lead in the first game and held on for the win. The Bat Pats trailed 3-2 in the fifth inning but exploded for seven runs helped by four walks, a catcher’s interference and a wild pitch on a strikeout that extended the inning.
But with the game one run away from ending due to the run rule, UVA-Wise answered with six runs in the eighth inning to cut the lead to 12-9. Then, after the first two batters were retired in the ninth, the Cavaliers loaded the bases before Tommy Meier’s long blast to left field was hauled in by Luis Zeledon (Los Angeles, Calif.) for the final out.
Patriot reliever Cory Klinger (Rushsylvania, Ohio) came in for that final out to record the save for starting pitcher Javier Perez (Henderson, Nev.),4-3who worked six innings, allowing five runs (three earned) on five hits. He struck out 10 and walked one. Matt Pavelich (Vail, Ariz.) allowed all six runs in the eighth inning and Trenton Claunch (Burgin, Ky.) worked 2/3 of an inning before giving way to Klinger.
Zeledon, Cody Miller (Yuba City, Calif.) and Eric Standafer (Shelbyville, Ky.) each had two hits and two runs batted in for St. Catharine. Andrew Garcia (Las Vegas, Nev.) had two hits, including a double, and scored two runs. Juan Moriel San Diego, Calif.) was walked four times in the game and scored twice.
What a difference a game makes as the two teams combined for just six hits in the second game. The Bat Pats’ only knock came when Jeremy Turpin (Lawrenceburg, Ky.) opened the game with an infield single. The game’s only run against Justin Wilson (2-5) came in the third inning. Joey Xavier (Selma, Calif.) walked to open the inning and was advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Charlie Pal (Deerfield Beach, Calif.). Xavier then scored when Turpin hit a ground ball to shortstop and Cavaliers’ first baseman CJ McAndrews missed the throw from Chaz Hall.
Meanwhile, Timothy Reed (5-3) was masterful on the mound. The senior right hander allowed five hits but just two runners got as far as second base. Reed fanned six and did not walk a batter. For the season Reed has walked only four batters in 57 1/3 innings and has recorded 50 strikeouts.
“He pitched a great game,” said Bramblett. “But he has done that all season. He has kept us in every game.”