Feb 09, 2017

Bruins Kick Off Cactus Classic With Double-Header

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)

TUCSON, Ariz. --- The George Fox baseball team kicked off the Cactus Classic at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium, Thursday, as the Bruins played a double-header against La Verne and Chapman.

Game One – La Verne

The Leopards took an early lead after recording a run in the bottom of the first. George Fox responded in the top of the fourth, though, as Brandon Wileman singled to right center to move Kyle Esquerra to second. Dillon Blankship singled to left field and the Bruins found themselves with bases juiced and freshman Matt Voelzke at the plate. Voelzke was up for the challenge, smacking a ball to center field for a double clearing all bases for three RBIs.

La Verne fired right back in the bottom half of the fourth, tallying 10 runs on 10 hits. The Bruins did their best to claw at the score with two more runs in the seventh, but La Verne held on for the 15-7 victory.

Game Two – Chapman
The Bruins bounced back in the second game with three runs in the opening inning. Dustin Wells received the nod for game two on the mound, and quickly took down the side. AJ Valencia helped the Bruins get going early, kicking off the bottom of the first with a single to center field. Esquerra singled through the left side to move Valencia to second, and Valencia stole third to leave runners on the corners. A double steal was put on by the Bruins, and Valencia stole home, while Edquerra found second. With a run on the scoreboard, Wileman singled through the left side with two outs to score both Jalen Drath and Sam Swenson.

Chapman responded in the top of the second with a run of its own.

Wells continued to carve up the opposition, as the senior lefthander recorded three strikeouts in four innings pitched. The Panthers took their first lead in the top of the fifth after scoring four runs on four hits and one error.

The Bruins brought the game within one in the bottom of the fifth to trail, 6-5. Esquerra kicked the inning off with a hit by pitch, and Andrew Reichenbach drilled a ball deep to center field to score his teammate. Zachery Muenster pushed Reichenbach home after a Panthers' error put Muenster on first.

After the two runs in the fifth, the Bruins had a tough time brining home another player. Chapman ended the game with three more runs to take a 9-5 win.

Top Performers:
Game One – La Verne
Esquerra went 2-3 at the plate with two runs scored, while Blankenship went 2-4 with two runs scored. Voelzke led all players with four RBIs, going 2-3 at the plate.

Game Two – Chapman
Esquerra had another stellar game at the plate, going 1-3 with two runs scored. Reichenbach went 2-4 with one RBI, while Wileman went 1-4 with two RBIs. Caleb Bell came in to end the game for the Bruins on the mound, throwing 3.1 innings with three strikeouts.

What Comes Next:
The Bruins continue the Cactus Classic Friday, Feb. 10, against Redlands at 11:30a.m. (PST).