March 10, 2013
WINTER HAVEN, Fla. - The 15th-ranked Grand Valley State baseball team was done in by errors on Sunday (Mar. 10) afternoon, falling to Missouri-St. Louis by a score of 5-3 despite holding the Tritons to only four hits in the game.
Missouri-St. Louis got on the board first in the bottom of the opening frame, getting a one-out hit by pitch and one-out walk. On a potential double play ball, the throw to first got away, allowing the runner from second to score and take a 1-0 lead.
The Lakers took the lead in the top of the fourth, getting a one-out hit by pitch and then a double in to left field by junior Taylor Banks to score senior Stephen Claypool. After junior Ariel Aracena-Sanchez singled to put runners on the corners, a passed ball allowed Banks to hustle in from third and give GVSU a 2-1 lead.
UMSL battled right back, tying the game in the bottom of the fourth on a single, sacrifice bunt and an RBI single to score him.
The Tritons broke through to take the lead in the bottom of the seventh, getting a lead-off single. After a pickoff attempt rolled to the fence to advance the runner to second, a sacrifice bunt moved him to third. A one-out hit by pitch put runners on the corners and it appeared the Lakers would get out of it after junior Sean Clancy used a third-to-first pickoff move to clear the runner from first base for out number two. However, the next pitch was high and went to the backstop, allowing the runner from third to scamper home for a 3-2 lead.
In the top of the eighth, sophomore Jamie Potts drove a one-out double in to the left field fence and junior Stuart Eisler brought him around to score with an RBI single back up the middle to tie the game at three.
In the bottom of the frame, the Lakers got a quick out on the first pitch, but then unraveled in the field. A ground ball to the right side of the infield got bobbled to put a runner on and a single down the left field line put two on with one out. The next batter hit a sharp ground ball to third that was misplayed in the infield and then misplayed again in left field for two errors on the play, allowing two runs to come around and score that turned out to be all that was needed for the victory.
Clancy (1-1) took the loss despite not allowing an earned run. Clancy pitched two innings in relief, allowing two hits and three runs (none earned). The starter, junior Chris Ward, threw six innings, allowing only two hits and two runs (one earned) with three strikeouts.
The Laker offense was held to only six hits on the day, with Aracena-Sanchez going 2-for-4 as the only GVSU player with multiple hits. Eisler and Banks each had a hit and an RBI, while Potts, Claypool and Banks all scored once.
GVSU falls to 4-4 on the year with the loss, while UMSL moves to 3-5 on the year.
The Lakers will now prepare for two games against Minnesota State, who made an appearance in the Division II College World Series last season. The mini series will begin on Monday (Mar. 11) at 11 a.m. with a nine-inning game against the Mavericks at Lake Sumter State College in Leesburg, Fla.