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Hunting Down The Error-Prone Stags

Capitalizing on three late Claremont errors, The Master’s College scored two runs in each of the seventh and eighth innings Tuesday afternoon to surge by the Stags 6-2 in Placerita Canyon.

The victory upped the Mustangs’ record to 5-2.

Knotted at 2-2 going to the bottom of the seventh, the Mustangs parlayed two hits and a pair of Claremont miscues into the go-ahead tallies. Cody Harris led off the frame with a base hit and when Joe Riddle’s single to right field was booted, both runners moved up 90 feet. Moments later, Harris and Matt Johnson, running for Riddle, both scored when Bryan Lucas’ grounder to second was misplayed, moving the Mustangs in front 4-2.

An inning later, the Mustangs tacked on a pair of insurance runs. Chris Talley laced a leadoff double to left field, advanced to third base on a wild pitch, and was joined on the bases when Jared Otto drew a walk. Otto promptly stole second base and when the Stag catcher’s throw went awry, Talley trotted home and Otto wound up at third base. One out later, Riddle singled in Otto with the game’s final run.

The unearned runs made a winner of freshman reliever James Scott, who worked two innings of two-strikeout, shutout ball for his first collegiate victory.

Through the first five innings it looked like junior transfer Charlie Gillies was going to notch his third win of the young season. The righthander, who earned his first start as a Mustang after giving up just one run in 9.1 innings over two relief appearances, blanked the Stags on three hits and struck out in five.

His teammates gave him one run to work with in the fourth when Ben Ives reached on the Stags’ first error of the afternoon. He then swiped second base and one out later, he pilfered third. J. T. Adams walked and then Talley’s bouncer to third plated Ives.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Mustangs went up 2-0 and Ives was the trigger man again. He led off with a single to left center field, stole second base, and moved to third on Tanner Leighton’s groundout. After Adams fouled out, Talley brought Ives home with a clutch, rbi single to center field.

But, that two-run lead lasted just half an inning as the Stags picked on reliever Mason Nesbitt for the tying runs in the top of the seventh. They scored on a groundout and a sacrifice fly to even the score.

On an afternoon when the Mustangs got plenty of help from the Stags, they rapped out only six hits, two apiece coming from Talley and Riddle.

Following a couple of off-days, the Mustangs are back in action on Friday when they host William Carey of Mississippi in the first game of a three-game series. The first pitch will be thrown at 2:30.

Game Stats

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