Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Rockhurst Pins a Pair on the Lions Lindenwood Drops Two in District 16 Playoffs Finishes Year at 22-22

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Rockhurst Pins a Pair on the Lions Lindenwood Drops Two in District 16 Playoffs Finishes Year at 22-22

Article excerpt

The Lindenwood College baseball team saw its season come to a close over the weekend.

The Lions were swept by Rockhurst 10-0 and 5-3 in the spur playoffs of the NAIA District 16 Tournament at Hidden Valley Park in Kansas City.

Rockhurst, the district's No. 2 seed, advances to the four-team, double-elimination tournament this weekend in Kansas City. Lindenwood, the two-time defending champion in District 16, finished 22-22.

"Any time you lose, it's frustrating," Lindenwood coach John Ward said. "But our guys played hard and that's all a coach can ask for. Rockhurst is a good ballclub and they did what they needed to do."

The Lions, who were seeded seventh in the district, were also swept in the regular season by Rockhurst, 7-4 and 8-3.

Rockhurst won Saturday evening's opening game on the strength of pitcher Scott Sibley, who limited Lindenwood to just two hits. The Hawks broke the game open with five runs in the bottom of the sixth.

"Sibley threw a great game and we got a little frustrated," Ward said. "It wasn't your typical 10-0 game, but they beat us pretty soundly."

In Sunday afternoon's game, the Lions got off to a solid start, going up 3-0 as freshman Jon Stephens carried a no-hitter into the fifth.

"A base running mistake kept us from being up 4-0," Ward said. "In the fifth, we gave up a walk, a passed ball and a hit to their No. 9 hitter, making it 3-1.

"In the sixth, a hit baseman and an error allowed them to tie it up at 3-3."

In the eighth, Rockhurst's No. 9 hitter came through again - this time with a two-run homer to lift the home team to the 5-3 triumph.

"It's a game we know we should've won," said Ward, whose team outhit Rockhurst 10-5. "If we could've gotten through that game, I really liked our chances in a deciding game. I felt our third, fourth and fifth pitchers gave us an edge, but I guess we'll never know."

Ward continued: "The kids played hard, but we just didn't catch many breaks. And Rockhurst played well; they're a solid, well-coached team and they're going to be tough to beat. …

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