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Lubking Sharp in Debut, Lutes Split at Concordia

Brock Gates

PORTLAND, Ore. - Trevor Lubking made his first collegiate start a great one on Tuesday afternoon, leading Pacific Lutheran to a second game win as the Lutes split a non-conference doubleheader with the host Concordia Cavaliers at Hilken Field.

After Concordia won the opener, 5-2, Lubking shut out the Cavaliers in his six innings of work, helping the Lutes to a 9-1 second game victory.

The games were the season openers for both teams.

1st Game - Concordia 5, PLU 2

The Lutes collected 10 hits in the game but left nine runners on base, including five in scoring position.

PLU took a 2-0 lead in the second inning on RBI singles by Curtis Wildung and Taylor Wattenberg, both making their first plate appearances for Pacific Lutheran. Wildung is a freshman catcher and Wattenberg is a junior transfer outfielder.

In the meantime, freshman Chris Bishop was sharp in his first collegiate outing. He ended up going 4 2/3 innings, allowing two unearned runs on four hits while walking two and striking out seven. The two unearned runs came in the bottom of the fifth after the first two batters reached on PLU errors.

Concordia scored the winning run in the bottom of the fifth against reliever Kipp Godfrey, who allowed the one run on two hits in 2 1/3 inning. Godfrey struck out three Concordia batters. AJ Konopaski finished for the Lutes, allowing the final two runs on three hits in the bottom of the eighth.

The Lutes had several opportunities to tack on more runs but didn't get the clutch two-out hit.

Jacob Hoffman and McClurkin both had a pair of hits to lead PLU's 10-hit attack, which was one more hit than the winning Cavaliers managed.

2nd Game - PLU 9, Concordia 1

Lubking, a left-handed freshman who a year ago earned first team all-state honors at White River High School in Buckley, had a stellar effort against Concordia. He gave up only two hits and one walk while striking out six batters. He retired the order in four times, and in the lone inning that the Cavaliers had a runner in scoring position against him, the second, Lubking ended the threat with a strikeout.

The game was scoreless until PLU broke through with five runs in the top of the fourth inning. Corey Moore led off the inning with a single and came around two batters later on a pair of Concordia errors. Bishop, who reached on one of the errors, then scored on a wild pitch. Ethan Ottemiller followed with a run-scoring double. With two outs and runners on second and third, Hoffman hit a two-run double down left field line.

The Lutes added three more runs in the seventh on three hits, including run-scoring singles by Brock Gates and Alec Beal, and the fourth Concordia error of the game. Pacific Lutheran added its final run in the top of the ninth when Beal's grounder scored Gates, who led off with a double.

PLU finished with 11 hits, including two apiece by McClurkin and Gates. Nathan Eisenhauser, Jacob Otness and Ryan Frost all threw an inning in relief of Lubking.

PLU head coach Geoff Loomis said that his freshmen starters "were excellent. The pitching staff in general was good. Lubking threw 70 pitches through six innings, and it doesn't get better than that.

"We hit the ball hard all day and played a solid second game with no errors and only a couple walks. It was very encouraging," Loomis added.

- PLU -