Feb 01, 2018

Bruins Drop Season Opener Against Tornados

A Winning Tradition

 
  • NCAA D-III National Champions (2004)
  • Eight NCAA D-III National Tournaments (2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009)
  • One NCAA Regional Championship (West 2004)
  • 10 Northwest Conference Championships (1997, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009)
  • 19 straight seasons .500 or better (1996-2014)
  • Nine Top 30 national rankings (2000, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2014, 2018)
  • 23 All-Americans
  • One National Pitcher of the Year (Scott Hyde - 2004)
  • One D3Baseball.com All-West Region Rookie of the Year (Matt Voelzke - 2017)
  • 10 Academic All-Americans
  • One NCAA National Coach of the Year
  • One NCAA Region Coach of the Year
  • 10 Northwest Conference Coaches of the Year
  • Five NAIA District Tournaments (1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994)
  • Three NAIA Disctrict Championships (1991, 1992, 1993)
  • Five NAIA Regional Tournaments (1991, 1992, 1993, 1997, 1998)
  • Two NAIA Distrcit Coach of the Years
  • 22 players signed to professional contracts
  • Three Ad Rutschman Small College Athlete of the Year Finalists (Derrick Jones - 2005, Scott Hyde - 2004, Eric Bell - 2003)
  • One Slats Gill Coach of the Year Award (Pat Bailey - 2004 finalist)
  • One George Fox Pasero Team of the Year (2004)
 

By: Alex Plusquellec

AUSTIN, Texas. --- After a big first inning, the George Fox baseball team took a one run lead late into the night but could not stop a Concordia rally as they fell 5-4 in the season opener.

Recap:

On a cool night in Austin, Texas, the Bruins' bats showed up hot. Jerred Seamons, who got the start at third base, sent a ball back up the middle for a leadoff single. Seamons later scored after a Kyle Esquerra single to left field.

In the next at bat, Matt Voelzke drove in Sam Swenson, who reached on an error. With two outs in the inning, Dillon Blankenship roped a double down the right field line, scoring Esquerra. The Bruins led 3-0 after the top half of the first.

Cameron Jack got the opening day start for the Bruins and was tasked with navigating an aggressive Concordia lineup. The Tornados were able to get two runs across in the bottom of the first, but Jack was able to settle in and scatter five outs over his final innings.

Despite early success from both lineups, the Bruins and Tornados were held in check through the middle innings. Jack and the Bruins found themselves in a tight situation in the bottom of the fifth. With runners on second and third and only one out, Jack was able to work out of the jam, thanks in part to big plays by the defensive unit behind him.

Jack's night was over after six innings in which he struck out six Tornado hitters and walked none.

After a smooth seventh inning from Mikah Takashige, Matt Voelzke came on in the eighth to try and pick up the two-inning save. Concordia was able to get to the sophomore, scoring two in the bottom of the inning to take their first lead of the night, 4-3.

Down to their final three outs, the Bruins were able to answer. After a Kyler Brudwick fly out to right, Tristan Guillen pinch hit for AJ Valencia and singled pass the shortstop.

Guillen moved over to second on a ground out by Seamons. With two outs and the tying run standing on second, Houston Thom's chopper up the middle was enough to score Guillen and tie the game up at 4-4.

Concordia quickly put the pressure on the Bruins in the bottom of the ninth, moving a runner into scoring position with one out. Voelzke was able to pick up the second out of the inning with a strikeout, but Tornados' Bret Leiferman took a pitch to left field, driving in the winning run to give Concordia a 5-4 victory.

Top Performers:

Voelzke and Blankenship each tallied two hits and an RBI for the Bruins, who forced Concordia starter Matt Williams to throw 94 pitches in four innings. Thom's big RBI in the top of the ninth kept the Bruins in the game.

What It Means:

The Bruins sit at 0-1 after the close loss, but will get the opportunity to work things out on the four game road trip.

What Comes Next:

The Bruins are back on the diamond Friday as they are set to face Schreiner. First pitch is set for 11 a.m.