Baseball - Fri, Mar. 27, 2009
CHICAGO - Behind a solid pitching performance by senior pitcher Dan Miller (Joliet, Ill./Joliet Catholic), the Saint Xavier University baseball team rolled to a 14-1 victory in seven innings due to the NAIA's 10-run mercy rule over Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) foe Cardinal Stritch University (Wis.) Friday afternoon at Richard R. Ferrell Memorial Field in Chicago. Miller flirted with a no-hitter before giving up a double with two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning and the SXU offense gave him plenty of support pounding out 17 hits en route to the 14-run output. The Cougars won their fourth consecutive game and improved to 15-9 overall this season and 4-2 in CCAC play.
Saint Xavier got off to a fast start scoring three runs in the top half of the first inning. SXU was the visiting team on the scoreboard for the originally scheduled road game due to unplayable field conditions at Cardinal Stritch. Junior outfielder Tony Testin (Shorewood, Ill./Joliet Catholic) led off the game with a single and later scored on his way to a 3-for-5 performance at the plate. Junior second baseman Matt Mueller (Burbank, Ill./Reavis) doubled to give the Cougars' runners at second and third. Zach Clements (Berwyn, Ill./Morton) plated Testin with a RBI infield single, while RBI groundouts by junior shortstop John O'Brien (Lake Zurich, Ill./Lake Zurich) and senior first baseman Matt Van Mill (Palos Heights, Ill./Bishop McNamara) scored Mueller and Clements. The Cougars went on to score three more runs in the second, one in the third, three in the fourth, and two each in the sixth and seventh innings, respectively. Clements led the Cougars going 4-for-5 at the plate. Testin and O'Brien both went 3-for-4 on the day.
Miller improved to 3-2 on the season allowing only one hit and one run (unearned) in his six innings of work. He lost his no-hitter on a misjudged fly ball to centerfield with two outs in the bottom of the sixth that resulted in Cardinal Stritch's lone hit and lone run. Sophomore rightie Joe Branigan (Plainfield, Ill./Plainfield South) pitched a scoreless seventh to wrap up the game. Saint Xavier (15-9 overall/4-2 CCAC) continues its three-game CCAC series with Cardinal Stritch on Saturday, March 28, with a home doubleheader. The first game is scheduled for a 10 a.m. start at Richard R. Ferrell Memorial Field.