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LC State Takes Battle of the Warriors to Open Avista NAIA World Series

Photo Credit: Spencer Farrin

LEWISTON – Lewis-Clark State Baseball opened its 2022 Avista NAIA World Series appearance with a 9-5 victory over Westmont (Calif.) on Saturday afternoon after rain pushed the contest a day. LC State took the battle of the Warriors behind 13 hits and a strong start by Trent Sellers.

Sellers’ 13th win of the season ties the LC State single-season record before Eli Shubert put together a solid relief outing. Luke White and Aidan Nagle each homered in the game, and six of the nine runs scored with two outs.

“Great start to the Series, winning the first one today,” Head Coach Jake Taylor said. “A lot of offensive damage with two outs throughout our lineup. Trent at the front end of the game competed hard and gave us a chance to get the bats going. Shubert has been fantastic lately and continued it again against Westmont this afternoon.”

Sellers completed a 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts in the top of the first, but the visiting Warriors took the early lead with a run in the second.

LC State evened the score in the bottom of the fourth when Sam Linscott led off the frame with a double to right-center. A balk pushed him to third before a sacrifice fly by Zach Threlfall made it a 1-1 ball game.

The LC Warriors put together a four-run inning to take the lead in the fifth. Pu’ukani De Sa reached on a fielder’s choice before taking second on a wild pitch, and a Riley Way single put runners on the corners. Aidan Nagle put LC ahead with an RBI groundout, and Linscott, Luke White, Justin Mazzone, and Zach Threlfall tallied four straight hits to bring in three runs. At the end of the fifth, LC State led 5-1.

Westmont’s Warriors answered with a run in the top of the sixth, but a double play turned by Way, A.J. Davis, and White ended any further threat.

LC’s two-out magic appeared in the home half of the sixth when a single by Way was followed by a two-run bomb of the bat of Nagle.

Greg Blackman came out of the bullpen in the seventh and struck out a batter, and White added to the LC offensive onslaught with a solo shot in the bottom half of the frame. Threlfall kept the inning going with a single and took second on a wild pitch, then scored on a pinch-hit RBI-single by Charlie Updegrave to make it 9-2.

Westmont struck for a two-run home run in the top of the eighth and LC went to Eli Shubert in the bullpen. The junior struck out the side to keep the LC Warriors in front 9-4. Westmont struck for one in the ninth, but Shubert closed out the game with the help of plays turned by the middle infield.

Threlfall led LC State with three hits and Nagle drove in three runs. Way, Linscott and White each recorded two hits in the game and Threlfall knocked in two runs. White’s home run was his 20th of the season, and Nagle hit his 16th.

Sellers picked up his 13th win of the season after striking out six in six innings. Blackman threw one inning, and Shubert fanned three in the final two frames.

The Warriors will take on the winner of Tennessee Wesleyan/Faulkner on Monday at 6:30 p.m.

Stay up to date with all things Warrior Athletics at lcwarriors.com and on social media @LCWarriors.