The Lee University baseball team remained tied with Faulkner University atop the SSAC standings with a weekend sweep of Auburn University at Montgomery.
The third-ranked Flames (15-2, 6-0 SSAC) followed Friday night’s 18-6 drubbing of the Warhawks (9-8, 2-4) with margins of 4-1 and 9-2, Saturday afternoon at Olympic Field.
“It's always tough to sweep a good AUM team,” said Lee head coach Mark Brew. “We have to be able to defend our home field in order to have a chance to win SSAC Conference Champion-ship. I was proud of our efforts this weekend.”
The Flames take to the road to face Milligan College on Tuesday afternoon. The non-conference doubleheader is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start.
FLAMES 9, AUM 2
Lee scored three runs in the sixth inning, one in the seventh and three in the eighth to break a 2-2 tie and pull away from AUM in the series finale.
“We definitely had a better offensive approach late in game two,” said Brew. “We were able to string together a couple big innings and use our running game.”
The Flames’ 13-hit attack was led by Brandon Rader. The senior was 3-for-4 with an RBI and one run scored.
Brady Renner, Josh Silver, Karsten Strieby and Derrick Pitts each tallied two hits in the game. Renner had two RBIs and scored three times. Strieby drove in two runs and crossed the plate twice. Pitts added an RBI double.
Mark Silva doubled in a run and Danny Canela brought a run home with a single.
Clint Terry started and went five innings before being relieved. He allowed two runs on five hits, walked two and struck out two.
Jeremy Stawychny (2-0) followed and picked up the win after three scoreless innings of work. The right-hander scattered three hits, walked one and fanned one.
CJ Lusted and Alex Moore pitched the final two innings to nail down the Lee win. Moore gave up one hit and struck out one Warhawk batter.
“I think Clint Terry and the bullpen did an excellent job on the mound,” added Brew. “CJ Lusted pitching out of a first-and-third situation with nobody out in a 5-2 game at the time was big for us as well.”
AUM was led offensively by Shelby Nobles with three hits in five at bats.
Will Ruffin (2-1) was charged with the loss after being tagged for five runs (four earned) in five innings on the mound. He struck out two and walked none.
FLAMES 4, AUM 1
José Samayoa pitched six innings and allowed just four hits and one run to pick up his third win of the season. The senior struck out seven AUM batters with no walks allowed.
“José was dominant today,” said Brew. “He had total command and two of the four hits he gave up were infield singles.”
Canela accounted for two of the Flames six hits in the game, including an RBI single that scored Renner in the third.
Strieby doubled and scored on Pitts’ RBI single. Corey Davis’ triple in the fifth inning chased home Rader, who was running for Canela, for the game-winning run.
“We didn't swing the bats as well as we wanted to, but found a way to score some runs,” Brew said. “I thought our defense was excellent as well.”
Eran Franks delivered two of AUM’s four hits. He doubled in the Warhawks’ lone run in the fifth inning.
Franks (1-2) was also the starting and losing pitcher for the visitors. He gave up four runs (three earned), six hits, walked two and whiffed three in five innings.
FLAMES 18, AUM 2
Led by a grand-slam homer by Derrick Pitts, Lee exploded for 10 runs in the sixth inning and posted an 18-2 victory over SSAC rival Auburn-Montgomery on a cool and cloudy Friday afternoon at Olympic Field.
Pitts also blasted a two-run homer in the fourth inning and finished the day with six runs batted in. He had plenty of help as the Flames banged out 15 hits against three WarHawk pitchers.
While Pitts was enjoying a breakout day for Lee, Josh Silver collected four hits, including a triple. The shortstop scored two runs and knocked in three of his teammates. Corey Davis continued his consistent hitting with a double, a single and two RBI. Second baseman Mark Silva added two hits and crossed the dish twice.
Karsten Strieby had a hit that pushed a pair of runs across the plate, while Brady Renner scored three times. Danny Canela had a one-base knock and a RBI. Chris Avey did the same and Trevor Burgess joined in the action with two runs scored and one run batted in.
Myles Smith worked five innings and improved his record to 4-0. Smith allowed four hits, two earned runs, walked three and struck out four. Kyle Briner hurled 1 2/3 innings. He gave up three earned runs, two hits, walked two and fanned four. Ryan Zimmer closed out the day for the Flames, getting the final out while allowing one hit and posting a strikeout.
Chad Reeves was the starting and losing pitcher for AUM. Blake Woo and Matt Hand also took the mound for the losers. Wes Hughes paced the WarHawk hitting attack with a double and a single. Josh Thompson had a double and scored twice, while Chad Mansmann followed with two hits and scored twice.