FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE USC LANCASTER SPORTS INFORMATION Wednesday, May 16, 2018
LANCERS BASEBALL SEASON COMES TO AN END
Lancers Fall Short in Region X Semi-Finals
The Lancers finished their 2018 campaign with a strong showing in the Region X Tournament. USCL entered as the 6th seed facing the 3rd seeded Spartanburg Methodist Pioneers. It was a hard fought battle until the very last out. Freshman Mike Nuñez gave the Lancers six strong innings on the mound, before turning the game over to Brady Smith. Smith shut the Pioneers down for two innings, giving up no runs and no hits. The Lancers came from behind in the Top of the 9th to take a 5-4 lead. Then, Brock Robinson slammed the door to earn the save for Lancaster. Jonny Watts led the USCL offense going 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs. Walker McDowell and Todd Mattox collected two hits apiece, as well.
With a Game 1 victory, USCL was set to face the second-seeded Fire Ants from USC Sumter. Redshirt-Sophomore Ryan Knowles got the nod to start Game 2. Knowles gave the Lancers six hard-fought innings before handing the ball over the Griffin Jester. Griffin fired two innings of no-run, no-hit baseball to seal the Lancers run-rule victory over USC Sumter. Redshirt-Freshman Jared Firmstone led the offensive charge with a monster day at the plate. Firmstone finished the day 5-for-5, with 5 RBIs. Jared hit two homeruns, with everyone in attendance feeling the second one, and missed a third homerun by mere inches. Todd Mattox also had a strong day in the box, going 3-for-4. The Lancers put up 12 runs in 8 innings, beating the Fire Ants 12-3.
In the Region X semi-final game, USC Lancaster played the top-seeded Florence-Darlington Stingers. Sophomore Brock Robinson took the mound for his first career start for the Lancers. Robinson pitched five innings, giving up only 2 earned runs, before exiting with the game tied at 3. Griffin Jester came on in relief and pitched the final two innings of the contest. Bryson Smart hit a triple in the top-of-the-sixth inning, and later scored to tie the game. The Lancers took a 4-3 lead on a Stinger wild pitch in the 7th. Florence-Darlington answered with a run in both the 7th and 8th innings to recapture the lead at 5-4. USCL ended the game with the tying and go-ahead runs on in scoring position in the top half of the 9th inning.
The Lancer season came to an end in the second semi-final game with a 17-4 loss to USC Sumter. USC Lancaster finished the season 22-23. Seven Lancers from the 2018 team are moving on to play baseball at the next level.
Nick Cicci - Elon University
Chase Coker - Valdosta State University
Josh Evans - Limestone College
Jared Firmstone - North Greenville University
Jacob Morrison - University of North Carolina-Pembroke