Rio Grande Sports Information
RIO GRANDE, Ohio - Carlos Flores homered and drove in two runs, while Trey Meade and Dalton Wilburn combined on a three-hitter as the University of Rio Grande posted a 3-0 game two win over the University of Pikeville, Tuesday afternoon, in non-conference baseball action at Bob Evans Field.
The RedStorm's victory in the nightcap produced a split of the doubleheader after the Bears posted an 11-5 triumph in the opener.
Rio Grande finished the day at 29-17-1.
Pikeville, a former Rio rival during their days as members of the Mid-South Conference, saw its record go to 24-21.
Flores, a senior from Guayanilla, Puerto Rico, hit a two-out solo home run in the first inning and added a run-scoring single in the fifth inning to cap the scoring in the final home game of his collegiate career.
Fellow senior Luis Jimenez (Salinas, Puerto Rico) added a run-scoring groundout in the third inning to account for the RedStorm's other run.
Meade, a freshman from Seaman, Ohio, blanked the Bears over five-plus innings in just his second varsity start. The right-hander allowed three hits and a walk, while striking out two.
Meade (2-0) was lifted in favor of Wilburn - a junior from Ashville, Ohio - after surrendering a leadoff single to UPike's Kase Mattingly in the sixth inning. Wilburn recorded his first save of the season by retiring each of the six batters he faced in order.
Flores finished 3-for-3, accounting for all but one of the RedStorm's hit total as a team.
Brandon Sewell had a double for one of the three UPike hits. Starter Matt Peterson, the first of five pitchers for the Bears, took the loss.
Game one saw Rio Grande jump to a 1-0 first inning lead thanks to a leadoff double by Jimenez, a single by senior Daryin Lewis (Circleville, OH) and a groundout by Flores, but the Bears rallied for four unearned runs in the third inning and three more runs in the fourth to take control.
Alec Barba delivered the big blow in the second with a three-run home run, while an RBI single by Jorge Perez, a bases-loaded balk by Rio sophomore reliever Juwan Padro (Bayamon, Puerto Rico) and a sacrifice fly by Peterson accounted for the third inning runs.
Rio Grande closed the gap to 7-4 in the home sixth thanks to an RBI single by junior Cody Blackburn (Amanda, OH), a run-scoring fielder's choice grounder by junior Kam Herring (Heath, OH) and a pinch-hit RBI single by freshman Eli Daniels (Minford, OH), but the Bears short-circuited the comeback attempt by scoring four times in the seventh to make it 11-4.
Anthony Roberts, the reigning MSC Player of the Week, had the big hit in the UPike seventh with a two-run double.
Jimenez hit a solo home run for Rio Grande in the home seventh to close out the scoring.
Jimenez, Lewis, Flores and Blackburn all had two hits each in the loss for Rio. Junior starter Jacob Hastings (Commercial Point, OH) allowed seven hits and five runs - only one of which was earned - over three innings in suffering the loss.
Barba, Roberts, Mattingly, Perez and Jay Vincent all had two hits for the Bears, while
starter Josh Bailey - the first of four UPike pitchers - was credited with the win.
Rio Grande returns to action on Friday evening, opening a four-game weekend series at Asbury University to close out regular season play.
First pitch for the opening game of Friday's doubleheader is set for 5 p.m.