Gomez Homer Drives Elon Baseball Past Appalachian State in Opener

Posted by Press Release on April 18, 2014 at 10:31 pm under College | Comments are off for this article

ELON, N.C. — Sebastian Gomez belted a three-run homer in the bottom of the eighth inning to break a 2-2 tie and propel the Elon Phoenix baseball squad to a 6-2 Southern Conference victory over the visiting Appalachian State Mountaineers on Friday night at Latham Park.

“He’s (Gomez) been around a long time and had some quality at bats,” said Elon head coach Mike Kennedy. “He doesn’t do that very often, but it was nice to see it tonight. (Lucas) Bakker was good, he competes. He made some good pitches. And Matt Harris has been on fire for us.”

With the game even at two heading to the last of the eighth, Appalachian starter Jamie Nunn walked Ryan Cooper on five pitches before being lifted for Dallas DeVrieze. The first pitch he threw was ripped through the right side by Casey Jones for a single. He took second on the throw to third to try and nail Cooper. Gomez then belted the second pitch he saw deep over the tall wall in left for a three-run home run, his first of the season, to put Elon (24-14, 10-6 SoCon) on top for good. The Phoenix tacked on a fourth marker in the inning when pinch-runner David Lowrey scored on a Danny Lynch double.

Elon was the first to score, plating two in the third on a Cooper ground out and Jones sacrifice fly.

The Mountaineers (13-22, 7-5) got one back when Tyler Zupcic led off the sixth with a homer off the foul pole in left and then tied it up at two thanks to a Tyler Stroup double in the seventh.

Appalachian loaded the bases with one out in the fourth inning only to see a dazzling play from Elon’s Quinn Bower keep the Mountaineers off the board. The Phoenix was able to escape the jam when Bower dove to grab William Head’s sinking liner to right and then doubled off the runner at second to end the inning.

Matt Harris (3-0) earned the victory in relief of starter Lucas Bakker. Harris struck out four of the six hitters he face in two innings and did not allow a base runner. Bakker gave up both runs on eight hits in seven innings. He struck out four.

The loss went to Nunn (3-6) who was charged with three runs on seven hits in seven innings of work.

For Elon, Jones extended his hitting streak to 24 games by going 2-for-3. Bower added three hits, including his 10th bunt single of the season. Lynch and Chris King also had two-hit outings for the maroon and gold.

The Phoenix and Mountaineers will play game two of this three-game set at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday evening at Latham Park. Prior to, and during, the game, children can participate in an Easter egg hunt. Gates open at 5:30 p.m.

                       1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R  H E
   Appalachian State   0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 2  8 0
   Elon                0 0 2 0 0 0 0 4 X 6 11 0

Win – Harris (3-0). Loss – Nunn (3-6). Save – None.

Umpires – HP: Randy Vestal 1B: Mac Stokes 3B: T.R. Sloan
Start: 6:30 pm Time: 2:22 Attendance: 451
Weather: Cloudy, 60 deg., Winds: NE 3
Nunn faced 1 batter in the 8th.

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