Runs Rebound Mustangs
April 2, 2013
By Leif Karlberg, TMC Sports Information Intern
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. – Coming off of a series loss to Concordia last week, The Master's College Mustangs, who rank seventh in the country, were hoping to get some momentum back in their favor. The Mustangs were able to do just that, winning both games of their doubleheader against La Sierra University (2-24), 10-0 and 10-1.
In the early game, the Mustangs, now 29-11 overall, jumped on the Golden Eagles early, scoring two runs in the first inning and one in the second.
Leading the game 3-0 in the fourth inning, Jon Popadics (Boise, ID) scored on a sacrifice by Spencer Downs (Kelso, WA), extending the lead to 4-0. However, the majority of the damage took place in the sixth inning when the Mustangs scored six runs off five hits.
On the defensive end, the Mustangs showed their depth in the bullpen, using four different pitchers on their way to a one-hit shutout. Daniel Shaeffer (Mount Airy, NC), started off the game and was credited with the win.
In a win that was a complete team effort, Popadics seemed to have his hand in most everything that took place. He ended the first game going 3-3 with a walk and three runs scored.
The second game of the doubleheader appeared almost identical to the first, as the Mustangs put two runs across in the first off of a rbi double by Steven Karkenny (Chatsworth, CA), followed later by Caleb Halverson's (Temple City, CA) sacrifice fly.
Once again most of the damage was done with a big inning later in the game. With a 3-1 lead heading into the bottom of the fifth inning, the Golden Eagles were doing everything they could to keep this game from ending like the first one. But the Mustangs had different plans, scoring seven runs off seven hits in the bottom of the fifth inning.
“We just tried to go up there and relax at the plate,” said third baseman Ryan Shackelford (Murrieta, CA), who went 3-4 with an rbi. “We knew that if we kept putting the ball in play and didn’t try to do too much, then the runs would come.”
The Mustangs benefitted from another combined effort on the mound, using six different pitchers, and only giving up two hits combined. Freshman Dalton Thompson (Riverside, CA) got credit for his first win as a Mustang, going two innings without giving up a hit. No other pitcher went more than an inning, as Tommy Kister (Saugus, CA) sent the Golden Eagles down 1-2-3 to seal the win.
With fresh arms and some offensive momentum, the Mustangs look forward to a home series this weekend against Vanguard. The first game of the series is set for Friday with the first pitch scheduled for 3:00pm.