PORTSMOUTH, Ohio (Baseball) – Derek Moore (SO/Wheelersburg, Ohio) went nine strong innings, allowing just two runs on nine hits, and Mitchell Lendenski (JR/Loveland, Ohio) ripped an RBI single in the tenth inning, as the Shawnee State baseball team outlasted Cumberland University, 3-2, in extra frames Friday afternoon to open a three-game set in Mid-South Conference play at Branch Rickey Park.
Moore's performance was nothing less than excellent, as the NAIA Preseason All-American scattered just six hits over his first eight frames. The sophomore retired 12 of the first 13 batters he faced, while striking out nine in the contest. CU starter Stevie Smith was just as spectacular, allowing a pair of runs (one earned) on six hits in nine innings while striking out seven.
Shawnee State kicked off the scoring in the opening frame, as Blake Maines (SO/Burlington, Ky.) doubled with no outs to score Lendenski, who led the bottom of the first off with a single. The score remained as such for the next seven frames, setting up a memorable ninth.
Cumberland plated its first runs of the game in go-ahead fashion with two scores on Moore, who did not factor in the decision. Kyle Allen knocked in the first run with a pinch-hit RBI sacrifice fly, bringing home Orlando Collado to tie the contest. Ryan Simmons followed with an RBI single to give the Bulldogs the advantage, 2-1.
Facing a fourth one-run defeat this season, the Bears responded with a run in the bottom of the frame to bring the score even. Mauro Olivarria (JR/San Diego, Calif.) began the rally with a one-out single and – one batter later with two away – Dalton Tinsley (SR/Kokomo, Ind.) reached on an error that brought home the run.
After a scoreless 10th inning for Cumberland – aided by a scoreless performance from Brandon Bonar (JR/Chillicothe, Ohio), who earned the victory – Adam Turner (FR/Lansing, Mich.) reached to lead off the bottom of the frame when he was hit by a pitch. Travis Bingham (FR/Versailles, Ky.) advanced Turner to second with a sac bunt to set up Lendenski's walk-off knock.
With two away, Lendenski singled through the left side and Joe Wallen (FR/Louisa, Ky.) – pinch running for Turner – scampered home to end the low-scoring bout.
The two squads are back in action for a doubleheader at Branch Rickey, slated to begin at 12 p.m. on Saturday.