ACU completed a three-game series sweep against the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff this weekend at Crutcher Scott Field.
Junior pitcher Spencer Chirpich got the start on the mound Friday night. He came out strong with two strikeouts in the first inning. Neither team scored in the first. Both teams stranded runners early.
The third inning, however, was a different story. The Golden Lions scored three runs on just two hits. Chirpich got the Wildcats out of the inning though with two strikeouts. ACU answered with three runs of its own in the bottom half of the third inning with hits from senior infielders Dalon Farkas and Robert Salazar bringing in runs.
Chirpich continued his impressive outing the next two innings with a combined four strikeouts. The Wildcats extended their lead in the bottom of the fifth inning with a sacrifice fly and an error, scoring two runs. The score after the fifth was 5-3.
Senior pitcher David Ruot came in for Chirpich in the top of the sixth. Chirpich finished his outing with three earned runs and eight strikeouts. Arkansas Pine Bluff closed the lead to one run after an RBI double to left field, making the game 5-4, in the eighth inning. This last effort from the Golden Lions was not enough to get the job done, however, as the Wildcats opened the series with a 5-4 win.
The Wildcats earned the second win of the series, Saturday afternoon. ACU won 9-7 on Saturday with senior outfielder/pitcher Derek Scott on the mound.
The Wildcats led 3-0 through three innings. In the fourth inning, Arkansas Pine Bluff tied the game 3-3. ACU answered in the fifth inning with two runs of their own but gave a run back in the top of the sixth. The Golden Lions took their first lead, 7-4, in the top of the eighth, but ACU answered with four runs of their own, closing the game 9-7.
Sunday was all offense for the Wildcats, outscoring the Golden Lions 16-7. Senior pitcher Jonathan Nicholson opened the game with two strikeouts in the first inning. Neither team scored in the first.
ACU scored two runs in the second inning, giving them a 2-0 lead. The Golden Lions scored in the third inning, but so did ACU, making the score 3-1 after the third. Through four innings Nicholson set his personal best with eight strikeouts. The Wildcats added two runs in the fifth and three in the sixth, making the score 10-1. The Golden Lions tried to close the gap by scoring three runs in the seventh, but ACU answered with six themselves in the bottom half of the inning. Arkansas got three of those runs back in eighth, however, the Wildcats ended with the 16-7 victory.
ACU will continue its season this week with five straight home games at Crutcher Scott Field. They will face UT Arlington Tuesday, Eastern Michigan on Wednesday and have a three-game series with Hartford this weekend.