SHREVEPORT, La. -- The No. 21-ranked Bellevue University baseball team pounded out 16 hits and scored seven two-out runs to defeat York College by a score of 10-4 to win the NAIA National Tournament Opening Round – Shreveport Bracket and secure qualify for the 63rd Avista-NAIA World Series.
#21 Bellevue: 46-14
Recap: Bellevue 10, York 4
Bellevue took advantage of a weary York team that had to claw out an exhilarating 9-8 walk-off win over Columbia earlier in the day just to reach the Championship Game. The Bruins capitalized with five runs in the first two innings to build a comfortable lead.
In the bottom of the second JT Patterson (1-4, RBI) and Cody Banks (1-3, 2 RBI) drove in runs with back-to-back RBI-singles for a 4-0 BU edge. Two batters later, Baasch drew a bases loaded walk to chase home another run.
The would be all the scoring for the Bruins until the sixth as the York pitching staff – running on fumes, playing their fifth game in three days – kept the Bruins in check.
That allowed the Panthers to cut into the deficit. Jake Sola put York on the board with a sac fly in the third. York threatened in the fifth but Colton Walker pitched out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam with a pair of strikeouts to keep Bellevue ahead 5-1.
Walker was unable to wriggle out of trouble in the sixth as Lawyer Braun came through with a two-run single to cut the lead in half and Matt Nunes chased in a run with a sac fly to make it a 5-4 ballgame.
Bellevue immediately responded with a pair of runs in the seventh. The first four Bruins to come to the plate in the inning reached base with Kory Longaker (2-3, RBI) and Banks coming through with a run-scoring single and sac fly, respectively.
The Bruins added a pair of insurance runs in the seventh with RBI-singles off the bats of Austin Alexander (2-5, 2 RBI) and Baasch.
Alexander singled in another run in the eighth for good measure.
Walker (6-3) earned the win for the Bruins after limiting York to just four runs despite 10 hits and three walks. He struck out seven batters over 5.1 innings.
Anthony Alvarado (1) came on in relief and pitched 3.2 hitless innings to earn the save.
Clay Lube (0-4) allowed three runs on a pair of hits and a walk in 1.1 innings as he took the loss for the Panthers.
Bellevue has now won 26-straight and 39 of 40 overall as they head into the 2019 Avista-NAIA World Series. The World Series will be held at Harris Field on the campus of Lewis-Clark State College in Lewiston, Idaho from Friday-Friday, May 24-31.
So far six teams have punched their ticket to the World Series: Bellevue (Shreveport Bracket), Southeastern (Macon Bracket), Faulkner (Montgomery Bracket), Georgia Gwinnett (Lawrenceville Bracket), St. Thomas (Miami Gardens Bracket), Indiana Tech. (Williamsburg Bracket), Lewis-Clark State (host). The final four bids will be awarded later today and tomorrow.
Tournament information will be disseminated from the NAIA National Office later this week.
The Bruins are making their 14th World Series appearance and first since 2016. That edition of the Bruins team earned a third place finish, falling just a game short of the winner-take-all title game.
NAIA National Championship Opening Round
Shreveport Bracket | Pilot Field | Hosted by LSU Shreveport
|Game No.||Monday, May 13||Time/Result|
|1||#4 Columbia (Mo.)||vs||#5 York (Neb.)||York, 7-6|
|2||#2 LSU Shreveport||vs||#3 Bellevue (Neb.)||BU, 10-7|
|3||#1 Oklahoma City||vs||#5 York (Neb.)||York, 12-7|
|Tuesday, May 14|
|4||#4 Columbia (Mo.)||vs||#2 LSU Shreveport||CC, 15-12|
|5||#3 Bellevue (Neb.)||vs||#5 York (Neb.)||BU, 6-1|
|6||#1 Oklahoma City||vs||#4 Columbia (Mo.)||CC, 5-4|
|Wednesday, May 15|
|7||#5 York (Neb.)||vs||#4 Columbia (Mo.)||York, 9-8|
|8||#3 Bellevue (Neb.)||vs||#5 York (Neb.)||BU, 10-4|