WESTWEGO, La. – Carl Labit, Jr. pitched 6.1 strong innings in relief, as the Loyola baseball team came back from a 6-0 deficit to beat Blackburn College, 12-11. The ’Pack scored five runs in the eighth inning to provide just enough cushion to seal the victory over the Beavers.
The top six batters in LU’s lineup each had two hits for the Wolfpack. Sophomore Chris May hit four RBIs to lead the Loyola attack. Five Wolfpack batters scored two runs each.
The Beavers (0-4) started out strongly, scoring six runs over the first three innings, taking a 6-0 lead. BC ground out a small-ball run in the first, added three runs in the second, and a single and a wild pitch scored two more in the third.
LU (8-15) answered with three runs in the bottom of the third. Slade Sanders and Brandon Snow reached base off of walks to lead off. Tyler Duplantis came up next, scoring Sanders with a double to left-center field. Ryan Scott drove in a run with a single, and May capped off the inning with a sacrifice fly.
After Blackburn built its lead to four in the top of the fourth, Loyola added three two-out runs in the bottom of the fifth. May and Karson Cullins scored when Taylor Domengeaux reached on an error. Brunet followed that with a single, scoring Domengeaux from third. In the next inning, Loyola tied the game at seven when May hit a groundout that scored Snow from third.
Still tied in the bottom of the eighth, Loyola took the lead when it erupted for five runs, all with one out in the inning. May drove in two runs with a single to give the ’Pack its first lead of the game. After starting pitcher Cody Unser was pulled, Cullins greeted reliever Tim Rhodes with a single, scoring Scott. May and Cullins crossed the plate off of a deep double to left field by Brien Delahoussaye.
Entering the ninth with a five-run deficit, Blackburn kept it interesting, pushing the Loyola staff to the limit. Labit was lifted from the game after allowing two runs. Hunter Tyree came into the game and retired an out, but allowed another two Beavers to score, narrowing the Loyola lead to one. Jeffery Castille came into the game and pushed catcher Austin Mullink to a 2-2 count before a pitch just barely nipped the corner for a called third strike to end the game and give LU the win.
Labit (2-0) earned the win for Loyola, giving up five earned runs over 6.1 innings and striking out four Beavers. Unser (0-1) took the loss for BC, giving up 11 runs (seven earned) over 7.1 innings. Castille picked up his first save of the season.
Blackburn will return to Segnette Field Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. to wrap up the series.
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