Huntsville, Ala. – Bethune-Cookman clicked on both sides of the ball as they took down the Bulldogs of Alabama A&M in game one of the weekend series, Thursday night in Huntsville, Ala.
The Wildcats (14-19, 8-5 SWAC) jumped on the Bulldogs early as Matthew Garcia set up B-CU with a one-out triple and scored on an RBI single from Irvin Escobar.
The Wildcats tacked on in the third when Garcia reached base again on a single and came around to score after a fielder’s choice and a passed ball. Brian Perez brought home Christopher Patterson with a double to left-center to score Christopher Patterson, making it 3-0, B-CU.
The Wildcat starter, Louis Lipthratt, looked untouchable for most of the evening. Going into the sixth he had allowed just two hits. Alabama A&M (5-22, 3-10 SWAC) finally broke through with a solo shot in the sixth to make it 3-1.
B-CU earned that run right back in the seventh as Garcia brought home Olasin on a sacrifice fly.
The Wildcats broke things open in the eighth on a Malik Stephens RBI single, a Franki Febles triple that scored two, and an RBI single for Garcia that pushed the lead to 8-1.
Lipthratt came out for the ninth looking for the complete game. The Bulldogs put two runners on with a walk and single, and a three-run homer finally chased Lipthratt as AAMU pulled to within 8-4. Derrius York recorded the final two outs to complete the victory.
“A great team win tonight,” Wildcats head coach Jonathan Hernandez emphasized after the game. “I’m very pleased with how we executed our game plan on offense. To be able put six runs on the board with two outs is a credit to our approach and it paid off.”
Febles and Garcia each notched a pair of RBI and triples in the game. Malik Stephens broke through with a 3-5 night with a double and an RBI.
Lipthratt finished the night tying his season-high with 8.1 innings pitched, allowing four runs on five hits and one walk with a season-high ten strikeouts in the win.
“Lipthratt did his job again,” Hernandez said. “His effort this evening sets the tone for the rest of the series.”
Courtesy: Bethune-Cookman Athletics