PIKEVILLE – The University of Pikeville opened baseball season by going 1-2 over the weekend in a series at St. Andrews (N.C.).
The Bears split a pair on Saturday before falling to the Knights in Sunday’s series finale.
Coach Chad Gassman’s club is scheduled for a three-game series beginning Friday when it visits Point, Ga., University. The home portion of the schedule will begin on Friday, Feb. 15 when Lourdes visits Johnnie LeMaster Field.
Game One: The Bears allowed four in the second and five in the sixth to drop the opener 11-2.
UPIKE managed four hits in the loss, with junior Bryan Bradley, senior Corey Adams, sophomore Nate Goodwin and junior Corey Gilligan all managing singles. Adams and Gilligan drove in the runs for the Bears.
Two pitchers combined to allow nine earned runs in the loss, with junior Zach Sutherland going the first four and getting the decision.
Game Two: Things went better in the nightcap for the Bears, who rallied from a 3-0 deficit after one for a 5-4 win.
After falling behind 3-0, a four-run second put the guests on top for good. The Bears tacked on an insurance run in the fifth, which it needed after allowing one in the bottom of the seventh.
Junior Chaz Conteras had two hits, including a double, and drove in two from the leadoff slot for the Bears. Freshman Erik Manning added two hits, while Bradley, Adams, Goodwin, junior Luke Wright and junior Brad Andrews all had singles.
Junior Joe Valentino went 5-1/3 innings to get the win, allowing five hits and three runs, two of which were earned. He fanned two and walked one. Senior Mike Rappazzo got the final five outs for a save, striking out one and allowing an earned run.
Game Three: A five-run fourth was too much for the Bears to overcome in a 7-4 loss on Sunday.
The Bears scored two in the first and posted single runs in the third and fourth to take a 4-0 lead before allowing five in the bottom half. The Knights added a run in the sixth and eighth to pull away.
Bradley again paced the Bears’ offensive attack. The second baseman had a single and a double while scoring two and driving in one. He also walked twice.
Adams and Manning doubled while Andrews, Wright and senior Pat O’Brien added singles.
Four Pikeville pitchers allowed 13 hits in the game, with Gilligan getting the decision.