MISENHEIMER, N.C. – Starter Ryan Jones (Asheville, NC) tossed five solid innings allowing just two hits with 10 strikeouts leading Lenoir-Rhyne University to a season-opening 6-1 victory over host Pfeiffer University on Wednesday afternoon at Joe Ferebee Field. The Bears put up a pair of unearned runs in the sixth and four more in the ninth scattering 11 hits as a team.
Two errors hampered the Falcons in the top of the sixth as Walton Shepherd (Lake Junaluska, NC) started off by reaching on an error at short. After a couple of groundball outs right back to the mound, Shepherd would score the game’s first run after a two-out error at second allowed Stephan Arcieri (Roswell, GA) to keep the inning alive while moving into scoring position. Rai Robinson (Kings Mountain, NC) quickly followed with a two-out single to right-center to put the Bears up two.
Lenoir-Rhyne opened things up in the ninth as an intentional walk to Matt Rose (Charlotte, NC) would load the bases with one out. After Shepherd went down on strikes, Dalton Hall (Hickory, NC) came up with the game’s first big hit with a two-run double to the gap in left-center. Logan Senelis-Jose (St. Thomas, VIRGIN ISLANDS) quickly followed with his own two-run double in the same spot to put the visitors up 6-0. A two-out Cole McGraw (Claremont, NC) RBI-single in the bottom of the ninth allowed Pfeiffer to avoid the shutout as Jon Gray (Granite Falls, NC) plated after a lead-off double to center.
Of the 11 hits pounded out by the Bears, Senelis-Jose, Arcieri and Colton Hansley (Asheville, NC) would each pick up a pair each. McGraw and Gray, along with Justin Harris (Albany, NY) and Kyle Hackey (Pittsboro, NC) each had a base knock for the Falcons. Starter Bryan Tuttle (Lenoir, NC) suffered the tough-luck loss after going five allowing the two unearned runs with seven strikeouts.
Pfeiffer returns to action this weekend at Catawba playing three games in two days at Newman Park. The Falcons will face Belmont Abbey in a non-conference tilt starting at 12:00 p.m. Saturday before going back-to-back against Mars Hill and Catawba starting at 1:00 p.m. Sunday.