TACOMA, Wash. – Four George Fox University hitters collected three hits apiece and combined to go 12-for-16, leading an 18-hit attack that propelled the 22nd-ranked Bruins to a 15-2 victory over the University of Puget Sound Loggers and a two-to-one Northwest Conference baseball series win Sunday afternoon here at UPS's West Field.
Nate Hickok went 3-for-4 with three runs scored and four RBIs, Zac Israel and Jay Kirchhofer both went 3-for-4 with a run and two RBIs, and Sam Stahl was 3-for-5 with two runs scored to pace the Bruins, who tied their season high for runs. Derek Aldrich added a 2-for-4 game with four runs scored and three RBIs, the latter all on a rare three-run single.
The Bruins jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the top of the second on a Kirchhofer sacrifice fly that scored Aldrich and a two-run double by Dan Winterstein that scored Hickok and Israel. They added two more in the third as Hickok doubled in Aldrich and Israel singled in Hickok.
The Loggers picked up their only two runs in the home half of the third. With two out, Andrew Grady and Dakota Resnik singled, and both on Matt Cox's opposite-field double down the left-field line.
The Bruins responded with a five-spot in the fourth. Kirchhofer doubled and scored on Taylor Hunter's two-out single for the first run. Stahl and Eric Gantenbein walked to load the bases, and with the runners going, Aldrich looped a short fly to right that hit off the glove of Cox and bounded away as Hunter, Stahl, and Gantenbein all scored for a three-run single. Aldrich advanced to second on a wild relay throw and scored the final run of the inning on a single by Hickok.
Continuing their assault, the Bruins added four more in the sixth, Hickok hitting a two-run single, Israel driving in a run with a single, and Kirchhofer picking up another RBI with a ground out to second. Gantenbein hit a sacrifice fly in the seventh to score Winterstein with the Bruins' final run.
The onslaught benefited George Fox starter Joey Clancy (3-0), who worked 6.2 innings, allowing only four hits while striking out four and walking none. Carl Mason went 1.1 innings in relief and struck out three, while Brian Davis fanned two in a ninth-inning stint. Taylor Volz (1-3), the first of five UPS hurlers, took the loss, being touched for six hits and five earned runs in 2.2 innings.
NEXT: George Fox (20-8, NWC 11-7) steps outside the conference Wednesday, hosting Corban University at 4:00 p.m. to make up a game that was rained out on March 9 ... Puget Sound (12-13, NWC 10-5) visits cross-town rival Pacific Lutheran University for a three-game conference series, starting with a doubleheader at 12:00 noon on Saturday.