LEWISTON, Idaho – (Box Score) Nine different Warriors recorded hits, as No. 2 Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) defeated No. 8 Southern Poly (Ga.), 9-1, Monday afternoon in the elimination bracket of the 2014 Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series. The Warriors are now 2-1 all-time against the Hornets at the World Series.
“You get a little bit nervous as a head coach when you leave the bases loaded and don’t get anything out of it in the first inning, but the guys never backed away and their spirits were good in the dugout,” said Lewis-Clark State head coach Jeremiah Robbins. “They were competing. We pitched it very well, had some clutch hitting, and just did a good job.”
With the win, Lewis-Clark State, which has not lost back-to-back games since April 2013, improves to 44-8 on the year and advances to play the loser of No. 1 Oklahoma Baptist and No. 4 Faulkner (Ala.) at 12 p.m. PDT on Tuesday. Southern Poly is eliminated from the World Series – its first since 2009 – and closes the season at 46-19.
Cody Lavalli and Michael Sexton led the way for the Warriors with 2-for-5, two RBI efforts. With the performance, Lavalli has hit safely in 12 of his last 14 appearances and owns 20 multi-hit games this year.
Cody Weiss and Kevin Hawk also had multi-hit games.
Gunnar Swanson, who took over for starter Cody Chartrand in the fifth, improved to 5-2 with the win. The junior right-hander held Southern Poly scoreless over five innings of work. Swanson allowed three hits and registered one walk and one strikeout.
Two errors and three stolen bases led to a 1-0 Southern Poly lead at the end of the first inning. However, that advantage only held until the third inning, as Lavalli shot a single to left field to drive in Kevin Hawk from second base. Hawk reached previously on a single of his own.
Lewis-Clark State added another run in the sixth, before pilling on two in the seventh, three in the eighth and two in the ninth to put the game to rest.
On the afternoon, Southern Poly was limited to four hits – all singles.
The Hornets used five pitchers in the game with Cole Goodwin taking the loss to fall to 4-3 on the season.
“We want to stay in this thing as long as we can,” said Robbins. “’Fight for another day’ is what we’ve been telling our guys, and they bought into it today.”
The Avista-NAIA Baseball World Series is a 10-team, double-elimination event hosted by Lewis-Clark State College (Idaho). For more information on the 58th annual championship, click here.