Sunday, April 22, 2018

Paladins pile up 22 hits to thump VMI

Bret Huebner had four hits in Furman's 19-1 win at VMI
in seven innings Sunday. Photo courtesy of Furman.
In a series full of crooked numbers on the scoreboard, it was Furman's turn on Sunday. Every starter had at least two hits as the Paladins crushed VMI 19-1 in seven innings to salvage the final game of the series in Lexington, Va. Furman improves to 3-1 all-time in "run rule" games, in which Southern Conference series finales can end when there's a 10-run lead in a game through seven innings.

Furman (19-21, 4-8) scored all of its run in just three innings. After VMI had an eight-run inning on Friday and a nine-run frame on Saturday, it was the Paladins who broke the game open Sunday with a nine-run second.

Furman opened the scoring with a double steal as Jake Crawford swiped home. After an RBI-single by Bret Huebner and a run-scoring bunt single for Ben Anderson, Brandon Elmy and Landon Kay had back-to-back walks with the bases loaded to make it 5-0. Crawford then had the big blow of the inning with a bases-clearing double. Crawford later scored on an error to cap the nine-run inning in which the Paladins sent 13 batters to the plate.

An inning later, Jason Costa and Jabari Richards each slugged three-run home runs to push Furman's lead to 15-1. The Paladins closed out the scoring with a four-run fifth, highlighted by Elmy's two-run double.

Making his first weekend start, Furman freshman John Michael Bertrand allowed one run on six hits in five innings for the win. Bertrand (4-1) had one walk and two strikeouts.

Huebner finished with four hits to lead the Paladins' season-high barrage of 22 hits. Logan Taplett added three hits while every other Furman starter each had two. Costa, Elmy, Crawford and Richards each finished with three RBIs.

Nathan Eaton went 2-for-3 to lead VMI (21-18, 9-6), which had its seven-game winning streak snapped.

The Paladins return to action Tuesday night at Fluor Field as they host South Carolina at 7 p.m.

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