THOUSAND OAKES, Calif. - The Gents scored the first six runs of the game, but a seven-run fourth by the Kingsman started a see-saw affair that the defending NCAA Division III Champs won as Centenary (8-6) fell to Cal Lutheran (10-9) 11-10 Sunday afternoon, March 11.
The Gents scored five in the first and one in the second to race out to a 6-0 lead. Junior Andrew Russell led off the game with a single and scored on senior Chris Zapata's double. Senior Ian Graham added an RBI single. After a hit batter, senior Cole Lavergne homered for the first time for the Gents this season - a three-run shot that completed the five-run frame.
Graham added an RBI single in the second.
After Cal Lutheran took an 8-6 lead, the Gents regained the advantage with a three-run sixth. Lavergne singled and scored on freshman Peyton Cormane's one-out double. Russell added a sacrifice fly to tie the game before a Zapata solo shot gave Centenary the lead.
Zapata and Lavergne both finished the game 3-for-4 with two runs scored and three RBIs. However, Lavergne took the loss, allowing six hits and three runs in two innings of relief.
However, the Gents lead after the top of the sixth was short lived as Cal Lutheran scored three in the bottom of the frame. Two infield singles and a walk loaded the bases with no outs. Cheynee Giles doubled down the left field line to score a pair before Daniel Stauffer added an RBI single.
Giles led the Kingsman from the plate, going 2-for-5 with four RBIs and two runs scored. Jeff Rebello (3-1) took the win in relief, allowing three hits and two runs in 1.2 innings of work. Christian Slattery picked up his third save of the season, throwing the final two innings and retiring the side in order in both frames.
Centenary pulled within one with a run in the top of the eighth, but the Gents climbed no closer in the 11-10 loss.
The Diamond Gents conclude their California trip Monday afternoon, March 12, with a contest at Occidental. First pitch in Los Angeles is scheduled for 1 p.m. (11 a.m. PDT).