Gabe Lares posted three hits and five RBIs, helping Cumberland to a 12-2 victory over 16th-ranked Campbellsville University and giving head coach Woody Hunt his 1,500th career win here Friday at Ernest L. Stockton Field-Woody Hunt Stadium.
Hunt has served as head coach at Cumberland for 35 seasons, registering his 1,500th career win in Friday’s contest. The Danville, Ky., native has recorded 1,439 victories against four-year schools and 61 more in two years as a junior college coach at CU.
Lares singled home a run in the second, plated two runs with a single in the fourth, scored another with a sacrifice fly in the fifth and doubled home a run in the seventh. The junior also scored the final run of the game on Ryan Dickison’s single to left, with the Phoenix ending the game early.
That was more than enough for Stephen Fischer, who improved to 9-2 on the season and put together one of his best outings of the season. The righthander gave up two runs on six hits in seven innings with one walk and four strikeouts.
Campbellsville starter Nick Przybylek (7-2) allowed six runs, his most allowed this season, on six hits in four innings. The righthander walked four, struck out two and hit a batter in his shortest outing of the year.
Tyler Yorko walked three times, doubled and scored four runs in the contest for the Phoenix, while Mike Melendez posted two hits. Hector Viera went 3-for-3 with two runs and three RBIs as well in the victory.
Romello Carbuccia doubled twice and scored a run for the Tigers and Casey Scott added two hits.
Cumberland (29-23, 10-9 Mid-South) started the game quickly, with Steven Hollis drawing a four-pitch walk before Dickison was hit with one out in the first inning. Nick McGrew then laced a 1-2 pitch into the gap in rightcenter, plating both runners for an early 2-0 advantage.
The Phoenix added another run in the second when Yorko drew a leadoff walk and went to second on Viera’s sacrifice bunt. Kyle Allen’s fly ball to right moved the runner to third and a two-out single to center from Lares drove home the run for a 3-0 CU lead.
Carbuccia started the Campbellsville (29-14, 12-7) third inning with a double to rightcenter and Miguel Solano was hit. With one out Scott doubled down the rightfield line, a ball that hit the chalk slicing down the line, scoring a run, and Solano came across on a sacrifice fly to left from Cameron Ketchen, cutting the Cumberland lead to 3-2.
Josh Croft’s triple down the leftfield line with one out in the fourth opened the door for the Phoenix to add to the lead. Yorko walked for the second time in the contest and Viera’s sharp single to left plated a run.
Allen also drew a free pass and Lares drilled an 0-2 pitch into left for a two-run single. Hollis then singled, but pinch-runner Bo Saunders was gunned down at the plate. Nevertheless, CU plated three runs in the inning to extend its lead to 6-2.
McGrew walked to start the Cumberland fifth and Melendez singled to left before a one-out walk to Yorko loaded the bases. Viera’s single to right plated a run and Allen drew a free pass as well, forcing in a run. Lares then popped to short rightcenter, where Ketchen made a terrific diving grab. His throw to the plate was just late, with Yorko sliding in ahead of the tag for a 9-2 CU advantage.
Campbellsville looked to cut into the deficit in the sixth after a leadoff walk to Ketchen and a double from Cody Erickson. Riley Joyce flied to right and Dickison gunned down Erickson at the plate for his 10th outfield assist of the season. Diego Reynoso flied out to deep left, ending what started out as a very promising inning for the Tigers.
Yorko led off the seventh with a double and Viera followed with a two-bagger just inside the rightfield line. Two batters later Lares doubled over the leftfielder’s head for his fifth RBI of the contest. With two outs Dickison singled to left and Lares slid under the tag of the catcher with the final run of the game.
Cumberland and Campbellsville conclude the conference schedule on Saturday with a Noon doubleheader, with Senior Day taking place between games.