Baseball Snaps Skid With 3-2 Win Over Evansville
OMAHA, Neb. - The Creighton baseball team used a total team effort in a 3-2 win over Evansville on Saturday afternoon. The Bluejays fell behind 2-0, but scored the final three runs of the ballgame, including the winning run in the 10th, to improve to 12-12 on the season, 1-4 in Valley play.
Senior Chase Webb earned his first win of the season, finishing the day with 1.2 scoreless innings of relief on the mound. Webb struck out three Evansville batters, not surrendering a single hit in his 12th appearance of the season.
Creighton looked like it would come away with its first victory in the last five games in the bottom of the ninth, when the Bluejays took advantage of a hit-by-pitch, fielder's choice and defensive error to load the bases. But a ground out would end the threat with three runners on base.
But it wouldn't take long for the Jays to again load the bases and then push across the winning run in the bottom of the 10th inning. Brennan Murphy and Brad McKewon put together back-to-back, one-out singles and both advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch by Evansville reliever Zach Taylor.
The Purple Aces chose to intentionally walk Chance Ross to put Bluejays on every base and Nick Judkins delivered the game-winning hit, driving a single through the pulled-in left side of the Evansville defense.
Creighton finished the game with a 10-7 edge in hits, led by McKewon's 3-for-5 day. Judkins also added a pair of hits, scoring a run and driving in the game-winner.
Evansville scored the first two runs of the game, pushing across one in the top of the second inning and one in the fifth, both off Bluejay starter Erik Mattingly. The senior gave up two runs on six hits, striking out a pair in his second start of the season.
Creighton got on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning, when junior Alex Staehely roped the first home run out of TD Ameritrade Park Omaha this season. Staehely pulled the Jays within one by pulling the ball into the Bluejay bullpen in left field.
The Bluejays then tied the game in the bottom of the seventh inning. After Judkins used a nine-pitch at-bat resulting in a single to center field, he was advanced to second on a Scott Thornburg sacrifice bunt. Anthony Bemboom then singled to left field, scoring Judkins for the game-tying run.
Creighton's bullpen combined to put up scoreless Evansville half-innings in the final five frames. Andrew Urban, Kurt Spomer and Mark Winkelman combined to throw three scoreless, hitless innings to keep the Purple Aces sitting on just a pair of runs before Webb came in to close down the game in the final two frames.
The two teams will play the final game of the three-game series tomorrow afternoon, with first pitch set for 1:00 p.m. Creighton will throw Shane Liska, making his first start as a Bluejay, while Evansville will start left handed pitcher Kyle Freeland.
NOTES: Chase Webb picked up his first win of the season on Saturday, extending his scoreless inning streak to 10.1 innings ... Webb has made four appearances in MVC play, tossing 5.0 scoreless innings and surrendering just one hit. He has six strikeouts in the last four games ... For the first time this season, the Bluejays sent a different batter to the plate to start off the game. Chance Ross has been the first batter in the Bluejay lineup every game this season prior to today, when hot-hitting Brad McKewon earned the spot. McKewon finished the day 3-5 from the plate ... Alex Staehely's first home run of the season in the fifth inning also marks the first ball hit out of TD Ameritrade Park Omaha in 2012 ... Scott Thornburg's sacrifice bunt in the seventh inning marked the first successful sacrifice bunt for the senior this season ... Evansville's Kyle Lloyd finished the day with 7.0 innings pitched, surrendering a pair of earned runs on six hits and striking out four batters ... Brad McKewon has now gotten at least one hit in nine of the 21 games he has played in, picking up multiple hits in six of the nine games ... The Bluejays finished the game with 10 hits, the first time since the March 17 game against North Dakota that the Jays have finished with double-digit hits.