Updated Fri, Feb 7, 2014 10:50 pm
Game 1: The Bryan Lions outlasted the Rio Grande RedStorm 4-1 in the first half of their doubleheader on Friday night.
Starting pitcher L.J. Rowden led his Lions, pitching a complete game with five strikeouts and only allowing a single run.
The Lions got runners on base early in the sixth inning and RedStorm pitcher Michael Deitsch just couldn’t seem to get them off. Joey Underwood made the game 2-1 after he scored on a sacrifice fly from Grant Zawadzki.
Kevin Roberts hit the double that put Underwood in scoring position and later scored on a single by Justin Morhardt. His run made the game 3-1 and pinch runner, John Cain, put the nail in the coffin after he scored on a single from Preston King, making the game 4-1.
Centerfielder Marcus Makuch opened up the game with a leadoff home run for Rio Grande but his team failed to get any more runs on the board after that.
Game 2: The Rio Grande RedStorm held off the Bryan Lions 4-2, to even the day on their doubleheader Friday night in Tennessee.
The game came down to the wire with runners on first and second for Bryan in the bottom of the final inning, but Rio Grande second baseman Grant Tamane turned two and end the game.
Tyler Latham singled to put runners at first and second for Bryan. The Lions’ Justin Morhardt grounded into the double play to close it out.
“I was happy all four seniors played well and [pitcher Eric] Ford was able to close the game well,” Rio head coach Brad Warnimont said.
At the start of the sixth inning, Warnimont brought in Landon Hutchinson for David Steele, who had thrown 5.1 scoreless innings with nine strikeouts to that point. The decision was for health reasons according to the coach.
“He’s had some arm issues but he threw what he could for us and did a great job,” Warnimont said.
The change almost proved to be catastrophic as the bases loaded right after Steele left the game as a result of an error and some poor defensive play.
After Hutchinson loaded the bases and gained no more outs, he was replaced by Ford. Preston King hit a sacrifice fly for the Lions, which brought in Morhardt to make the game 3-1. Ford walked the next hitter to reload the bases and Bryan capitalized on an error from Rio Grande catcher Austin Hall to make the game 3-2. Ford salvaged the inning, stopping the bleeding after the two runs.
Rio Grande has another doubleheader Saturday against Madonna College starting at 12 p.m.