Bears Sink Dolphins in 10-1 A-Sun Championship First Round Win
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Mercer baseball team used a five-run first inning to pick up a 10-1 Atlantic Sun Championship first round win over Jacksonville on Wednesday afternoon at Lipscomb University's Dugan Field at Marsh Stadium.
The win is the first for Mercer (34-22) in the A-Sun Championship since 2007 and the first in the tournament against Jacksonville (25-28) since 2006.
“Matt McCall gave us a great outing today in his first A-Sun Championship appearance and showed everyone how good he really is as a true freshman,” said head coach Craig Gibson. “DiMauro had a big day for us at the plate to help us pull away early and we will look to keep this going into tomorrow night.”
After McCall pitched a scoreless top of the first, the floodgates opened for the Bears offense in the bottom of the frame.
Mercer scored five runs in the inning off Jacksonville starter Matt Loosen, who ended up getting pulled from the game after facing seven batters and failing to record an out. Junior Thomas Carroll recorded a base loaded walk, senior Michael Langley and junior Joe Winker contributed RBI singles and senior Nick DiMauro hit a two-RBI double to give Mercer an early 5-0 lead.
Langley added to the Bears lead in the bottom of the third when he launched a solo home run to center field to give Mercer a 6-0 advantage. The long ball was Langley's sixth of the season and his 94th hit overall, putting him in a tie for the 19th for the most hits in a single-season in A-Sun history.
Mercer put the game out of reach in the fifth with two more runs. Sophomore Billy Burns hit an RBI single and a passed ball allowed DiMauro to score to make the score 8-0.
That was more than enough run support for McCall who shut down a very potent JU offensive unit. The Valdosta, Ga. native pitched 5.1 shutout innings, allowing just one hit to earn his seventh win of the season.
DiMauro finished the day going a perfect 5-for-5 at the dish with three RBI and a run scored. The Boca Raton, Fla. product tied an A-Sun Championship record for most hits in a single game, with five.
Mercer will take on East Tennessee State University in the second round of the A-Sun Championship on Thursday evening. Game time is scheduled for 7 p.m. Central/8 p.m. Eastern time at Lipscomb University's Dugan Field at Marsh Stadium. Fans can follow the action with live video on A-Sun TV at atlanticsun.org or live stats on lipscombsports.com.