Eagles lose first GSAC game
The Biola Eagles opened up the Golden State Athletic Conference play with a 3-0 loss to the Point Loma Nazarene University Sea Lions on Wednesday, Feb. 23. Sophomore Nick Turner, who had yet to pitch a win in his first three starts for Biola, took the hill for the Eagles and pitched a complete game giving up only three runs. In the first inning, Sea Lion Scott Stidham hit a two-out, two-run home run to open the scoring for Point Loma, and it proved to be all they needed.
Turner took the loss, but is not to blame for the Eagles’ lack of run production; they had two opportunities to score, but failed to capitalize. In the second inning, junior Drake Fages walked and was followed up by a single from senior Garrett Leon, but Sea Lions starting pitcher Chris Gonzalez stopped the rally with an inning-ending double play.
With one out in the ninth inning, the Eagles got two runners on base with singles from juniors Vinnie Fayard and Mac Sullivan. However, they were unable to push a run across as Gonzalez coaxed fly balls from the next two hitters to end the game. Fayard had two of Biola’s six hits by going 2-4 with a double.
Biola claims second game win
The following day, Biola fared much better as they defeated Point Loma 7-2 in the second of a two-game set. This win evened the Eagles’ record at 6-6 and 1-1 in conference play. Biola took the lead with a four-run first inning, capped off by a three-run home run from Sullivan.
Fayard started things for the Eagles by driving a single to center field and scoring the first run of the game. The Sea Lions did not go away immediately. They rallied right back in the first inning by scoring two runs. Biola starting pitcher, junior Kevin Ryan, walked the first hitter and then hit the next with a wild pitch. Another wild pitch allowed the first run for Point Loma to score and a single by Tyler Kuehl drove in the second, but Ryan ended the rally with a strikeout.
“I felt I didn’t pitch as well as I would have liked,” Ryan said, “I was a bit wild coming away with however many walks I surrendered, but the defense behind me did an excellent job all around.”
He came away with the win by going five innings with three strikeouts and only two runs; however, he did walk six batters. Juniors Kyle Atkins and Cameron McVey finished the game for Biola, preserving the win for Ryan, by getting the final 12 outs. Atkins threw three perfect innings before McVey finished the game by striking out the side.
The Eagles would continue to score. In the seventh inning, sophomore Benji Sutherland added an insurance run with an RBI single and freshman Johnny Farrington tacked on another with a single of his own in the ninth. Farrington had two hits to go along with three runs scored.