CBB: Warriors stumble in NAIA opener

(LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga.) It wasn’t the start that head coach Robert Ruiz had hoped for as his team started play in the NAIA Championship Opening Round Tournament. Playing in the second game of the Lawrenceville Bracket, Westmont (39-16) fell to St. Thomas (Fla.) by a score of 5-0 in the double-elimination tournament.


As a result, Westmont will take on Spring Arbor of Michigan (30-17) in an elimination game tomorrow at 11:00 a.m. EDT / 8:00 a.m. PDT. Spring Arbor lost to St. Catharine of Kentucky (38-16) in the tournament’s first game by a score of 9-3.

Golden State Athletic Conference Pitcher of the Year Russell Harmening (10-3) took the loss for the Warriors. He gave up five runs (four earned) in four innings of play. Harmening allowed seven hits, struck out six and walked one.

The Bobcats of St. Thomas took an early lead, scoring two runs on a home run over the left-center field fence by designated hitter Paul Chacin.

St. Thomas added an unearned run in the third inning when Harmening hit catcher Steven Fisher with a pitch with the bases loaded to force in a run.

The Bobcats scored two more runs in the bottom of the fourth inning when Eric Santamaria delivered a bases-loaded single to centerfield.

Westmont’s Sam Sheenhan was called in to pitch in the bottom of the fifth inning and threw four scoreless innings. He allowed three hits, striking out four and walking one.

Marcos Barrios, the Bobcat starter, was awarded the win. He pitched seven innings allowing six hits, striking out eight and walking one.

Westmont catcher Ryan Crowe and third baseman Graylin Derke were responsible for the majority of Westmont offense. Crowe went three for three at the plate with a walk. Derke was two for three.

In the third tournament game, #4 Georgia Gwinnett (48-12), the tournament host, defeated St. Catharine by a score of 11-5. The Georgia Gwinnett Grizzlies advance to meet St. Thomas tomorrow. St. Catharine will play in tomorrow’s late game against the winner between Westmont and Spring Arbor. First pitch in that game is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. EDT / 3:00 p.m. PDT.