Muskies sweep doubleheader in conference opener
Athletics - posted on 3/27/2009
The Lakeland baseball team swept a two-game road doubleheader over Wisconsin Lutheran, 3-2 and 15-11, in its Northern Athletics Conference opener on Friday at Neumann Family Field in Milwaukee.
In Game 1, Lakeland (5-9, 2-0) escaped a none-out, bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the ninth, thanks to a clutch performance out of the bullpen by sophomore righty Bill Miller.
The Muskies led 3-1 entering the frame. After sophomore starter Mike Ruzek surrendered a walk and two singles, coach Chris Thousand called on Miller to get out of the jam.
Miller gave up a lead-off sacrifice fly, but induced back-to-back groundouts to end the game and pick up his first save.
"Bill did a great job," Thousand said. "The first game was pretty good all around, even though I would have liked to see a little more offense. We had good defense behind good pitching."
Ruzek tallied his second win of the season, going eight innings and striking out six.
Freshman left fielder Mike Huber led the Muskies offensively, going 3-for-4 with a run batted in.
Sophomore catcher David Novak doubled in a pair of runs in the top of the fourth to break a 1-1 tie and give Lakeland the lead for good.
In Game 2, Lakeland pounded out 19 hits, jumping out to a 14-3 advantage en route to the win.
The Warriors (3-10, 0-2) rallied to within four runs in the bottom of the ninth, but Lakeland reliever Mike Phillips got Justin Barkhurst to fly out with two runners on to end the game.
"We got up by double digits, and Wisconsin Lutheran really did a nice job of fighting back, but we held on," Thousand said.
Every Muskie starter registed at least one hit, as junior centerfielder Jake Heinemeyer led the way with a 4-for-5 performance. Sophomore first baseman Cal Post knocked in four runs and added three hits, while sophomore right fielder Andrew Schartner compiled three hits and three runs scored.
Senior LHP Jake Van Camp went six innings, surrendering just one earned run and six hits while striking out three for the win.
Lakeland is scheduled to return to action this Sunday for its home opener against Concordia, Wis. The NAC doubleheader is set to begin at 12 p.m.
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