Baseball: Tigers Cruise To 4-1 Win Over WKU Behind Hummel's Complete Game
Jake Hummel tossed a complete-game and Allen Riley and Daniel Johnston provided the offense as Pacific posted a 4-1 victory over Western Kentucky in the finale of the Baseball at the Beach tournament at Charles Watson Stadium in Conway, S.C. Sunday morning.
Hummel (Peoria, Ariz.) scattered eight hits, pitching out of jams three times, and was touched for just one earned run. He walked none while striking out a pair of Hilltoppers. Western Kentucky entered the game at 5-1, but Hummel shut down the 'Topper offense, facing 36 batters and needing 109 pitches to improve to 1-0 on the season.
Riley (Fresno, Calif.) went three-for-three at the plate, with three singles including two-run double in the bottom of the sixth, while Johnston (Portola Valley, Calif.) hit his second home run of the season in the second inning.
The junior OF Riley ripped a leadoff single through the right side of the infield to get Pacific started in the bottom of the second and then Johnston lined a first-pitch fastball over the left field wall. The second home run of the season for the junior transfer, who made his first start at third base, was turned on and belted over the teal wall in left to give Pacific a 2-0 lead.
After cruising through three innings, Hummel pitched out of trouble in the fourth, as the Hilltoppers loaded the bases on an error, a hit and a hit batter. But the Tigers senior got Casey Dykes to fly out to right with the bases loaded and two to end the threat.
In the top of the sixth, Ivan Hartle led off the inning with a double for WKU and advanced to third on a flyout. After Hummel hit Ryan Hutchison with a pitch, the Hilltoppers' leading hitter, Matt Rice lofted a fly ball down the line in right field. Riley got behind the ball, catching it in fair territory and delivered a one-hop strike to the plate. Tiger junior catcher Jacob Sylvester (Livermore, Calif.) applied the tag in the collision with Hartle, as the double-play ended the inning.
After gunning down the runner at the dish, Riley added his two-run single in the bottom half of the sixth, as sophomore 2B Dustin Torchio (Santa Cruz, Calif.) led off with a double down the line and moved to third on perfectly placed bunt single by Brett Christopher (Livermore, Calif.). WKU starter struck-out the next two Tigers hitters, with Christopher, the Tigers junior leadoff man, swiping second with one out. And then Riley delivered a line drive through the right side in the same spot as his first single, to push the Tigers' advantage to 4-0.
That single chased WKU starter Taylor Haydel, who was saddled with the loss allowing four earned in 5.2 innings of work. He struck out six, but allowed all seven of the Tigers hits to even his record at 1-1 on the season.
WKU mounted a comeback in the seventh, as Logan Robbins led off with a double to left. With one out, Scott Wilcox singled to centerfield, but Christopher charged to hold Robbins at third base. Hummel struck out DH Chris Bullard for the second out, but leadoff man Jared Andreoli lined a single past Torchio's out-stretched glove at second to plate Robbins. Hummel then coaxed an infield grounder to Johnston, who stepped on the third base bag to force out Wilcox and end the inning.
The Hilltoppers two-out single in the ninth was stranded when Hummel got Bullard to pop out to third base to end the game.
Christopher registered a two-for-four day at the plate with a run scored, while Torchio and Johnston finished one-for-three each as the Tigers tallied seven hits on the day. Riley finished the weekend six-for-12 with a pair of doubles and three RBI to improve his average .417.
Pacific improves to 1-5 on the season and returns home to face Sacramento State at Klein Family Field on Wednesday, March 2 at 6 p.m. The Tigers open a three-game set with Gonzaga on Friday at 6 p.m., part of a five-game home stand at Klein Family Field.