BRISTOL, Tenn. – The King University opened their home schedule with a pair of come-from-behind victories over Davis & Elkins College on Thursday afternoon. The Tornado took game one 9-3 behind a complete game from George Helbig and a pair of home runs from Trader Flora and Bubba Ruiz. In game two, Octavio Mirabal tossed another complete game, leading King to the 7-1 victory.
FINAL SCORE: King 9, Davis & Elkins 3; King 7, Davis & Elkins 1
LOCATION: King Baseball Field; Bristol, Tenn.
RECORDS: King 3-2; Davis & Elkins 0-2
- Mark Michael posted five hits in seven at bats on the day for the Tornado. He laced one double and drove in a team-high three runs.
- Along with Flora and Ruiz ripping their first home runs of the season, Tyler Bailey went big fly for the first time this season in game two.
- Tony Valdes ripped four hits, including two triples, and scored three times while Ruiz scored four runs and laced three hits.
GAME ONE HIGHLIGHTS
- The Senators got on the board first with a pair of runs in the opening frame. Davis & Elkins got back-to-back run scoring hits, a double and single to take the early lead.
- Valdes tried to spark the King offense with a leadoff triple in the bottom of the inning. He later scored on a double steal, pulling the Tornado within one.
- A pair of doubles, the second with two outs added a run for the Senators in the second inning.
- However, Helbig settled in after the second inning, only allowing three hits over the final five frames. He ended the contest with nine strikeouts and didn't walk a batter for his first career win.
- Flora started the second inning with his first career home run, ripping the 2-0 pitch over the left field fence to cut the Tornado deficit back to one run.
- King gained their first lead of the day in the fourth inning on a Hunter Barbato sacrifice fly that scored Bailey who walked earlier in the inning.
- Ruiz followed with a two-run home run to left center, stretching the lead to 6-3.
- The Tornado added a run in the fifth and two more in the sixth, on a Michael single to center and Flora double to take a 9-3 lead.
- Helbig worked around a leadoff single in the seventh to give the Tornado the 9-3 victory.
Winning Pitcher: George Helbig (1-0) 7.0 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 8 SO
Losing Pitcher: Austin Main (0-1) 3.0 IP, 9 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO
GAME TWO HIGHLIGHTS
- The Senators got the scoring going again in the first inning, this time with an unearned run to take a 1-0 lead.
- However, that was the only blemish on Mirabal's line as he only allowed two hits over the final six innings.
- Mirabal also matched his career-high of nine strikeouts for the second straight contest.
- The Tornado offense responded in the bottom of the first as Valdes sparked the offense with a leadoff single.
- He later scored on a J.P. Castaneda sacrifice fly and Michael made it a 2-1 lead with a double that scored Ruiz.
- Bailey ripped his first home run of the season in the second inning, taking the first pitch he saw over the left field fence.
- The Tornado added a run in the fourth inning and two more in the fifth as Austin Meyer drove in one with a single and Michael made it a 6-1 lead with a run-scoring single.
- King tacked on an unearned run in the sixth inning to take the contest 7-1.
Winning Pitcher: Octavio Mirabal (2-0) 7.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 9 SO
Losing Pitcher: Shawn Pass (0-1) 4.2 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 7 SO
FOR THE FOES
- Johnny Liu led the Senators at the plate, ripping a pair of hits and scoring twice.
- Bragg Eastin recorded three hits on the day and drove in one run.
- Frank Masella also registered a pair of hits on the day.
- King and Davis & Elkins will conclude their series with a doubleheader on Friday starting at 12:00 p.m. at the King Baseball Field.