Army Falls To Eastern Kentucky, 8-6

Jon Crucitti

Jon Crucitti

Feb. 23, 2013

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ROCK HILL, S.C. - Demetrius Moorer went 2-for-2 with three walks and two runs scored, and Sean Hagen finished 3-for-4 with one RBI and one run scored as Eastern Kentucky defeated Army, 8-6, in the first game of the Coca-Cola Classic on Saturday at The Winthrop Ballpark.

Anthony Bazzani (1-1) picked up the win on the mound for the Colonels (2-3) after allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out five batters during his outing. Myles Scott recorded the final four outs to earn his first save of the season.

Army starter Chris Rowley (0-2) was touched for four runs on nine hits and five walks in five innings of work. Jon Crucitti and Patrick Mescher both collected two hits apiece to lead the Black Knights (0-3) offensively.

"We showed some signs of improvement today, but we still need to work at becoming more consistent in all three phases," said Army head coach Joe Sottolano. "I thought we battled offensively all day long. We had guys hit the ball hard, and that is encouraging. We exhibited improvement defensively as well, but we need to continue to find that consistency. This is a young club, and what we really need is more reps out on the field. We'll look to improve each and every day we take the field, and we'll get our next opportunity tomorrow against a good Delaware State team."

Eastern Kentucky pushed across three runs in the bottom of the first inning to open a quick 3-0 lead. Alex Hughes delivered a two-run double to put EKU on the scoreboard, and Hagen followed with an RBI single to supply the Colonels the early cushion.

Army battled back, however, plating single runs in the second and third innings to trim Eastern Kentucky's advantage to 3-2. The Black Knights manufactured a two-out rally in the top of the second, and Mescher's RBI single made it 3-1. Army put together another two-out uprising in the third as Alex Jensen was hit by a pitch, moved to second base on Mark McCants' base hit and scored when Jacob Page singled.

Eastern Kentucky got one of those runs back in the bottom of the fifth to establish a 4-2 lead. Hagen singled with two outs, stole second base and scored on Kyle Nowlin's base hit.

The Colonels then scored twice without the aid of a hit against Army reliever Brock Davidson in the sixth inning, pushing their advantage to 6-2.

Army closed the gap to 6-4 after scoring twice in the top of the seventh. The Black Knights scored their first run thanks to an Eastern Kentucky throwing error, and the second run came around on a double-play ground out.

EKU responded in the bottom of the seventh inning as Luke Wurzelbacher's RBI single extended the Colonels' lead to 7-4.

The Black Knights continued to battle back, scoring twice in the eighth inning to make it 7-6. Crucitti singled to open the inning, and he moved to second base when Connor Love was hit by a pitch. Both runners moved up a base when Daniel Cortes laid down a sacrifice bunt, and Crucitti scored from third on Harold Earls' RBI ground out. Love then came around to score when Jensen reached on an error by the EKU shortstop.

Shaun Ball homered leading off the eighth inning to increase EKU's lead to 8-6. Army put the tying runs on base in the top of the ninth, but Scott induced a double-play ball to end the game.

Army will close out play at the Coca-Cola Classic on Sunday, Feb. 24, with game versus Delaware State. The nine-inning contest is set to begin at 11 a.m.

Game Notes: Army falls to 1-3 all-time versus Eastern Kentucky ... Jacob Page delivered his first career RBI with his run-scoring single in the third inning ... Brock Davidson made his Army debut, pitching the sixth and seventh innings.

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