Nunez downs Enterprise State and Mississippi Delta in Sunday baseball action
For Immediate Release
Contact: Jason J. Leader
Contributing Writer: Louis Lehr
ALL SYSTEMS IN SYNC IN PELS’ TWINBILL SWEEP
02/24/19 CHALMETTE, LA. The Nunez Community College Pelicans used strong pitching, timely hitting, and tight defense in a Sunday sweep at Suarez Stadium. The Pels defeated Enterprise (Ala) State, 3-2, in the opener and came back several hours later to finish off Mississippi Delta Community College, 8-4.
Hawaii native Nigel Mayfield brought the island trade winds with him as his windblown sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 7th scored Trevor Robinson with the winning run as the Pelicans walked it off in Game 1 against the visiting Boll Weevils. The pitching tandem of starter Cameron Daigle and reliever Frank Miller held Enterprise to just 3 hits over 7 innings, with Miller picking up the win.
Nunez opened the scoring in the bottom of the fourth. SS Tyler Roberts singled and stole second, and then avoided Hayes Shepard’s swipe tag at 3rd on 2B Alex Powell’s grounder, with Powell reaching safely on the play. After Mayfield was hit-by-pitch to load the bases, Roberts scored on 1B Zack Dorsey’s grounder to first. After C Austin Fontenot was also plunked to re-load the sacks, CF Dominick Curole, down 1-2 in the count, worked a 6-pitch walk off Weevil starter Wells Deloney to force in run #2.
Enterprise cut it to 2-1 in the top of the 6th on Austin Thrasher’s one-out solo homer to center, and then tied it in the 7th on Shepard’s one-out bases-full sacrifice fly to left, before Luke Toups snared Thrasher’s hard liner to right to end the threat.
In the bottom of the inning, Robinson reached second on 2B Thrasher’s wild throw to first on the back end of a double-play attempt. Grant Akridge then dropped Roberts’ one-out fly ball to right, with Robinson taking third. After Powell was intentionally walked, Mayfield hung tough on a 3-2 count before lifting a pop fly into a short right-field gale, forcing Thrasher to make a nice diving catch on the play, but which allowed the deciding run to tag up and score.
In the day’s finale, Curole turned in another dominant outing in a complete-game 10-strikeout, 6-hit performance. The efficient right-hander seldom pitched from behind, averaging just 4 pitches per batter. He was backed up by an offense that produced the last 7 runs with clutch 2-out hitting.
The Pels struck for 5 runs in the 3rd as singles by Mayfield and Roberts preceded a walk to Toups. Curole helped his own cause with a hard liner to right that scored Mayfield, but Roberts was thrown out at home, attempting to also score, for the second out. A scary moment followed as Jacob Allen’s hard smash off Trojan starter Logan Clark’s shin left the righty writhing in pain on the mound. After several minutes, Clark was able to be helped off the field to a thankful ovation from the crowd. With the bases now full, Robinson lined a double to left-center scoring Toups and Curole, with Allen taking third. Powell then followed with another rocket to center, scoring both runners.
Delta chipped away at the lead the next two innings, cutting it to 5-4, but Curole ended both threats with inning-ending strikeouts. The Pels came right back in the bottom of the 5th with a 3-spot as Toups and Robinson singled around Curole being hit by a pitch. After Toups was forced out at home on Powell’s grounder to 3rd for the second out, 1B Dylan Gaspard cleared the bases with a fly ball double off the CF screen just over the outstretched glove of Jatavis Melton to make it 8-4.
Hammond’s Mike Latino tried to buy the Pels more insurance in the 6th, leading off with a single to center, which was followed by a Roberts single and a one-out walk to Curole. The Pels left the bases loaded in the inning, but the rally was typical of the offensive pressure the Pels applied to the Trojan pitching all afternoon.
In his weekly radio show (Sundays at 7:30 on WGSO 990-AM) post-game, a happy Pelican Coach Glenn Powell applauded his team’s effort, pitching dominance, and never-say-die attitude. Powell seemed especially proud of his defense, attributing the Pels’ success this day, in part, to the team committing only one error over 14 innings on the day.
In today’s second game. Delta defeated Enterprise 3-2 in 9 innings on Ty Riche’s walk-off single.
Nunez will hit the road for the first time this season with a Wednesday doubleheader against the SW Mississippi CC Bears at SMWCC Field in Summit. Game 1 will be a 2PM matinee, with Game 2 to follow at approximately 4:30 PM. The Pelicans will return to Chalmette this Saturday for a doubleheader against Holmes (Miss) CC. Game 1 first pitch at Suarez Stadium will be 1PM.
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