April 4, 2014
ABILENE – A five-run fifth proved to be all that the Lamar baseball team would need on Friday night as the Cardinals picked up a 6-4 series-opening win over Abilene Christian at Crutcher Scott Field.
With the victory, the Cards improved to 16-14 on the year with a 3-7 mark in Southland Conference play. The Wildcats dropped to 13-13 and 2-2, respectively.
Will Hibbs continued his strong sophomore campaign, tossing six innings and allowing just three hits without a walk. The Friendswood native surrendered a pair of runs, but only one was earned. Lance Warren came on in relief and gave up a pair of runs on four hits over the final nine outs. Hibbs improved to 3-1 on the year, and Warren picked up his first save of the season.
Offensively, the Cards were led by Jacoby Middleton, who was 3-for-5 with a pair of runs batted in and a score. Both Brandon Provost and Jude Vidrine had two-hit showings at the plate, and as a team the Red and White out-hit the hosts 10-7.
Sam Bumpers, winner of a pair of national awards for his contributions last week, kick-started the LU offense in the fifth, lacing a one-out single to center. A Kevin Santana walk and Provost single loaded the bases, and singles from both Kyle Markum and Middleton pushed the game's first three runs across home plate. Justin Eckols was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded later in the frame to add another, and Vidrine closed out the scoring with a sacrifice fly.
After ACU got on board with a pair of scores in the sixth, Vidrine singled home Mason Salazar
to put LU ahead 6-2 after seven.
Two-out hits from Gunnar Buhner triple and Emil Litterer put the Wildcats back in business in the ninth, but Warren was able to induce a flyout to end the game.
The two sides, which are playing their first series since 1973, will return to action on Saturday at 2 p.m.