CBB: Harmening, Warriors win series opener

Westmont bats unloaded at Russ Carr Field as #21 Westmont (20-7, 14-6 GSAC) posted an 11-3 Golden State Athletic Conference win over Arizona Christian (8-16, 8-14). The Warriors exploded for 14 hits including four for extra bases while Russell Harmening picked up his league-leading seventh win of the season.

Harmening pitched a scoreless six innings, allowing six hits while striking out seven. He did not allow a walk. On the season, Harmening (7-1) has tallied 54 strikeouts against just 10 walks. His season ERA is now 1.30.

The Warriors took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning when Michael Stefanic hit a ball to left field that took one hop and jumped the outfield fence for a ground-rule double. Steven Pollex, who led off the inning with a single to right, scored from second on the play.

In the third inning, designated hitter Derek Rodigo connected for his first home run of the year – a two run shot that hit the top of the second fence in left field.

In the fourth inning, Ryan Beveridge scored from third when Will Barring ground into a double play with the bases loaded and nobody out. That made it a 4-0 game.

Westmont scored a single run again in the fifth inning when pinch hitter David Gabel delivered an RBI-single to center field to drive in Turner Conrad.

In the sixth inning, Michael Pollex, hitting for Rodigo, singled to center field, driving in Stefanic to collect a two-out RBI.

Arizona Christian got on the board in the top of the seventh with a single run and scored one more in the eighth before the Warriors exploded in the bottom of the eighth for five more runs. Alex Bush started off the inning with a ground-rule double to left-center field. After Barring was hit by a pitch, Matthias doubled to right center to drive in Bush and advance Barring to second.

Beveridge then pinch ran for Matthias but he was thrown out at second when Michael Pollex reached on a fielder’s choice. Conrad laid down a bunt while Barring broke for home. The Firestorm elected to attempt a play at the plate, but Barring slid underneath the tag to score the eighth run for the Warriors.

Steven Pollex then singled to left, advancing Conrad to second and driving in his brother Michael. Rudy Leon followed with a single to left field to scored Conrad and move Steven Pollex to third. Alika McGuire pinch hit and delivered a sacrifice fly to center field to bring home Steven Pollex.

The Warriors and Firestorm will meet up again tomorrow for a doubleheader beginning at noon.