ST. GEORGE – The Dixie State baseball team completed the series sweep against Fresno Pacific University in anticlimactic fashion Saturday afternoon. After a tight contest to open the series, the Storm blew out Fresno Pacific in the last three games. As in the second and third games of the series, the Storm put up big numbers early and then coasted to a 9-4 win Saturday at Bruce Hurst Field.
In the first inning, the Storm loaded the bases. Tanner Morache then scored when Cam Gust drew a walk. Jerome Hill II then singled through the left side to score Sam Hall. The final run of the inning came on a sacrifice fly by Miles Bice. Ryan Rodriguez scored to give the Storm an early 3-0 lead.
In the second inning, the Storm put up two more runs with two outs. Morache hit a triple down the right field line. Drew McLaughlin then singled to the shortstop to score Morache. Sam Hall singled to center field, advancing McLaughlin to third. Hall then stole second. McLaughlin scored on the catcher’s throwing error on the steal. After two it was 5-0.
In the third inning, Hill started things off with a single up the middle. Miles Bice then singled through the right side, advancing Hill to third. Reece Lucero then singled through the right side to score Hill. The runners advanced to second and third on the throw to the plate. Morache then singled to score Bice, but was caught at second base on the play for the final out. After three, the Storm increased the lead to 7-0.
FPU rebounded to put up four runs over the next two innings. The Storm added two insurance runs in the seventh and eighth innings. Lucero batted in Hill on a fielder’s choice in the seventh. In the eighth, Hall singled down the right field line to score Morache.
Mason Hilty moved to 7-0 on the year picking up the victory on the mound in relief. Hilty pitched four-plus innings, scattering five hits and striking out five. Offensively, Morache led five Storm batters in multiple hits with four. Morache took over from Sam Hall’s cue over the past two games, getting three of the four hits needed to hit for the cycle. The leadoff hitter had two singles, a double and a triple.
“Morache played great today,” said McLaughlin. “Both he and Hall have shown great senior leadership stepping up when the team needs them.”
Lucero also continues to hit well from the catcher position. He had two RBIs to lead the team on two hits. For the series Lucero played three games, hitting multiple hits in each game. He had seven RBIs on seven hits. “Lucero hit .630 for the week,” said Dixie State head coach Chris Pfatenhauer. “Our catchers work hard behind the plate and any offensive production we get is a bonus.”
The Storm will now go on the road for its next series. They will play doubleheaders on both Friday and Saturday against Point Loma Nazarene. Game time for the first game Friday is noon Pacific Time.
Stats: DSU 9, FPU 4
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