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Sunday, April 18, 2010The Lipscomb Bisons rallied from being down 7-0 and took a 9-8 lead in the 8th inning when senior first baseman Ryan Wilkins drilled a three-run homer run over the left field wall. But the Bisons were unable to complete a series win against Florida Gulf Coast giving up three runs in the 9th inning to fall 11-9 Sunday afternoon at Ken Dugan Field at Stephen L. Marsh Stadium.
The Bisons (12-24, 5-7 A-Sun) pitching staff struggled to find the strike zone throughout the game issuing 12 walks and hitting three batters.
Sophomore right-hander Davey Hackett started the game for Lipscomb looking for another strong performance after throwing a complete game five-hit shutout against Kennesaw State last weekend.
Hackett faced the minimum batters through the first two innings despite walking a batter in each inning. In the first he picked off a runner and in the second Hackett induced a double play.
FGCU (23-12, 14-4 A-Sun) took the early lead when they scored three runs, two earned, in the third. After run-scoring hits by Stephen Wickens and Mikel Alvarez, the Eagles stayed alive and tacked on an additional run when a ground ball rolled under short stop Zack Messer’s glove. After issuing two more walks, Hackett escaped with the bases loaded when Luke Smierciak popped up to Wilkins.
FGCU scored two more runs off Hackett in the fourth and took a 7-0 lead in the fifth scoring two more runs off reliever Chad Fromm.
Sophomore M.L. Williams put the Bisons on the board in the fifth when he connected on the first pitch of the inning putting it over the right-center wall for his first home run of the season. With two outs and runners on the corners, designated hitter Andrew Nickerson singled through the left side scoring Lee Wilson.
In the 6th inning FGCU recouped a run when Joe Guarnaccia fouled out down the right field line that scored Zach Maxfield. The Bisons took the run back in the bottom of the 7th as third baseman Corey Hale scored on a wild pitch.
The Bisons rallied in the bottom of the 8th scoring six runs to take the 9-8 lead. With one out both of the Wilson brothers hit singles through the right side scoring a run. FGCU brought in a Rob Matthews who struck out Hale before Messer singled up the middle scoring Tyler Wilson. Then Wilkins drilled the 0-1 pitch off the batting cages in left field for a three-run home run.
Fromm returned to the mound for the 9th, but after issuing a walk to the first batter senior Matt Bowling was brought in to close the game. Bowling gave up three hits, issued an intentional walk and hit a batter as the Eagles scored three runs to take the 11-9 lead.
Jacob Barnes earned the save (1) for FGCU disposing the Bisons in order in the bottom of the inning.
Matthew (2-0) was credited with the win for FGCU while Bowling received the loss (0-5) for Lipscomb.
The Bisons are back in action Tuesday night against No. 18-ranked Vanderbilt at Ken Dugan Field. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. The game is available on the Lipscomb Sports Network and ASun.TV.