Baseball - Wed, Apr. 16, 2008
CHICAGO - In a wild, windy game that saw a combined 33 runs and 38 hits, the Saint Xavier University baseball team came up just short falling, 17-16, to Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) foe Purdue University-North Central (Ind.) Wednesday afternoon at Richard R. Ferrell Memorial Field in Chicago. SXU led, 16-14, heading into the ninth inning, but gave up three runs off two Panther home runs in the top of the inning to drop the game. The Cougars (21-16 overall/4-3 CCAC) racked up 19 hits in the ballgame, but had four errors in the field and used six different pitchers over the nine-inning affair.

Offensively, there was no shortage of impressive performances by Saint Xavier with junior centerfielder Don Skelly (Oak Lawn, Ill./Marist) leading the way. Skelly went 4-for-5 at the plate and hit a grand slam in the bottom of the fourth inning to give his team an 8-7 lead. He finished the game with three runs scored and five RBI. Sophomore shortstop John O'Brien (Lake Zurich, Ill./Lake Zurich) also had a good day with three hits, including a three-run homer in the bottom of the first inning. Sophomore rightfielder Zach Clements (Berwyn, Ill./Morton) also notched a two-run shot in the bottom of the fourth to give SXU nine of its 16 runs off three swings of the bat. The game was back-and-forth throughout with four lead changes and some big scoring innings, including a combined nine runs apiece in both the first and seventh frames and seven total runs in the fourth inning. Pitching was tough for SXU Wednesday as the staff gave up 19 hits (including three home runs and two doubles), six walks and three hit batsmen.

Saint Xavier (21-16 overall/4-3 CCAC) takes a break from its conference schedule to host NCAA Division II foe Lewis University (Ill.) on Thursday, April 17. The game is scheduled for a 3 p.m. start at Richard R. Ferrell Memorial Field.