Baseball's doubleheader against Mercer suspended until Sunday at noon

April 5, 2008

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - With the contest tied 15-15 in the eighth inning of game one, the rains swept through the First Coast causing the doubleheader between the JU baseball team and Mercer at John Sessions Stadium to be suspended.

The first game of the doubleheader will be concluded at noon on Sunday with the second game scheduled to begin 30 minutes afterwards.

Mercer took a 3-0 lead in the top of the second when the Bears generated three runs on five hits, including RBI singles by Billy Shaughnessy and John Dortch and an RBI groundout by Steve Karwatt.

The Dolphins answered with six runs on three hits to take a 6-3 lead in the bottom of the second inning. Junior catcher Jeremy Gillan and junior designated hitter Brad Simmons drew consecutive walks to lead things off before senior first baseman Matt Dobbins hit a single back up the middle to drive in Gillan with one out.

After freshman center fielder Chris Connelly drew a walk to load the bases, Webster's wild pitch allowed Simmons to score. Junior right fielder Thomas Myers drew a walk to load the bases once again and with two outs, sophomore second baseman Chuck Opachich drove in a run with an infield single to short. Freshman third baseman Glen Johnson followed with an RBI walk before Gillan dropped in a two-run single to center field.

The Bears recapture the lead, 8-6, in the top of the third after scoring five runs on two hits including a grand slam down the left-field line by Dortch.

JU cut the deficit to 8-7 in the bottom of the third when Dobbins hit a solo home run to left center field, his first career round tripper, with one out.

Mercer pushed the advantage to 10-7 in the top of the fourth when Mike Armstrong hit an RBI single off of umpire John Cospito and Shaughnessy drove in a run with a grounder to third base.

The Dolphins cut the deficit to 10-8 in the bottom of the fourth when senior shortstop Matt Lopez drove in a run with a bases loaded walk. Junior left fielder Kyle Fleming led off the inning with a walk and then advanced to second on a single to right by Opachich. After Simmons got a fortunate bounce on an infield single to second, Lopez drew a walk to drive in Fleming.

The Bears increased the lead to 12-8 in the top of the fifth when Tyler Brown laced a two-run double to right center with two outs.

JU recapture the lead, 15-12, with seven runs on five hits while taking advantage of two Mercer errors. Connelly led of the inning with a single to left field and then moved to second after Fleming drew a walk. After Connelly advanced to third on a wild pitch, Opachich drove in a run with a single off the glove of Mercer pitcher Lath Guyer. With runner on first and third and two outs, Gillian hit a fly down the right field line which was tracked down by Dortch in right field but the ball popped out of his glove, allowing the bases to clear. After Simmons reached by a fielding error by Shaughnessy at short, Lopez singled through the left side to plate Gillan.

Mercer evened things up in the top of the seventh when the Bears scored three runs on four hits, including a two-run double down the right field line with two outs.

The contest can be followed via GameTracker on