BOCA RATON, Fla. – The Florida Atlantic University baseball team scored six runs in their first three turns to the plate and three pitchers combined to stifle Old Dominion’s potent offense on Thursday night at FAU Baseball Stadium, 6-1.
The Turning Point
Old Dominion (35-18, 18-10 Conference USA) threatened early, but the duo of Kyle Marman and Nick Swan bent but didn’t break. In the first, Marman walked two and allowed a hit to load the bases with no one out, but struck out the next three Monarchs. In each of the next three innings, ODU had at least two runners on but didn’t score (for a total of nine stranded in the first four frames).
Meanwhile, the Owls (32-18-1, 17-11 C-USA) scored once in each of the first two innings, beginning with a leadoff home run to right by Jared Shouppe. In the second, Austin Langham singled, preceding Esteban Puerta hitting a ball to the deepest part of the park, off the wall in center. Langham then came in on a Pedro Pages RBI single for a 2-0 lead.
The FAU offense got all they needed in the third, all with two outs. Tyler Frank reached on an error on a sinking liner, and scored on a David Miranda double in the gap in right-center. Miranda and Langham (who walked) then came in on a monster home run to left through the wind off the bat of Puerta.
On the mound, Marman and Swan each pitched two scoreless innings, and turned it over to Alex House. The junior righthander turned in an efficient five-inning, 50-pitch stint, allowing just a lone run on a sacrifice fly in the seventh. The most pitches he threw in an inning was 14, including an eight-pitch ninth to earn the save.
- Puerta and Frank each had two hits, with Puerta knocking in three of the Owls’ six runs
- Marman and Swan had twin two-inning lines of two hits and no runs, while House gave up four hits in his five innings and struck out two
- Coupled with Louisiana Tech’s loss to Middle Tennessee Thursday night, the Owls are in third place alone in the C-USA standings. They are also now just one game out of second place behind ODU
“He only threw 50 pitches, and that’s perfect,” said Head Coach John McCormack of House. “So now he’s done for the weekend and is good for the conference tournament. I think it was really important for him for his psyche to get out there and pitch really well, and it’s good for us. We got a win, that’s what we needed. (We’re) one step closer to what we need to do this weekend.”
Game two against the Monarchs is another 6:30 p.m. start, on Friday night. Blake Sanderson will start for the Owls against ODU’s Adam Bainbridge.
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