JACKSON, Miss.—Behind the solid pitching performance out of starter Luke Summers, the Fontbonne University baseball team picked up a 3-1 win in its season opener over Belhaven.
Summers, a St. Louis, Missouri, native, tossed 6.0 innings, allowing just one run on five hits and struck out a career-high eight. Ryan Howell, meanwhile, followed up with 3.0 innings of shutout ball to collect the save.
At the dish, the Griffins (1-0), compiled nine hits and were led by Michael Puckett, Jr., going 3-for-4 with an RBI. Jackson Penrod went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the No. 3 slot in the order, while Jonathan Hoevelmann, Ryan Schocker, Evan Siegler and Gus Purschke contributed one hit each.
Belhaven (1-3), meanwhile, committed three costly errors on the night, which spoiled Tyler Wolfe's performance on the mound. The senior hurler went 7.0 innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on seven hits and sat down four. Tucker Calhoun led them at the plate going 2-for-4.
The game remained scoreless up until the fourth when Schocker reached base on a one out double. After a fly-out, Matt Tossick reached base on an error and that allowed Schocker to score, giving them the 1-0 lead.
Fontbonne added onto its lead in the sixth. Penrod led off with a single and moved up a base on an error. After a groundout, a single and a strikeout, Puckett Jr., singled through the left side of the infield, plating Penrod to make it 2-0.
In the home half, Gasper D'Anna hit a one out single and scored on Will Costinett's RBI double. Kreg Garner followed up with a single to put runners on the corners and just one out.
However, Summers bared down and struck out the final two batters he faced on the night to keep Fontbonne ahead.
In the seventh, Deiydon Rushing led off with a walk and advanced to second on a ground-out. Two batters later, he scored on Penrod's single to push the lead out to 3-1.
That proved to be than enough for Howell, who sat the Blazers down in order in the eighth and ninth innings to secure the two-run victory.
The team is back at it tomorrow morning at 11:30 a.m., against Berry.
Fans make sure to stay updated on fontbonnegriffins.com throughout the year for full updates and recaps on the Griffins baseball team.