No. 2 Lander baseball hits nine homers in Falcon sweep

No. 2 Lander baseball hits nine homers in Falcon sweep

MONTEVALLO, Ala. – Colby Painter's grand slam in the second game was one of Lander's nine home runs -- including Connor Lewis' school-record tying 11th -- Saturday in the second-ranked Bearcats' Peach Belt Conference doubleheader sweep at the University of Montevallo. Lander won the first game, 16-4, and the second 19-3.

Continuing its best season ever, Lander improves to 26-3 overall and 14-3 in the PBC, while Montevallo sinks to 17-12, 8-9.

In the first game, Dylan Wolchik improved to 6-0 after striking out 11, walking three and allowing three earned runs on six hits in 6.2 innings.

Montevallo's Cody Hughes (2-2) took the loss, striking out two, walking one and allowing six earned runs on seven hits in 3.1 innings.

Lander, which outhit the Falcons, 21-9, opened the first inning with back-to-back solo home runs by Erik Lunde and Patrick Grady. The Bearcats extended the lead to 4-0 in the second after Lunde drove in Thomas Bess, and Grady singled in Lunde.

Montevallo trimmed the margin to 4-3 on Zack Willoughby's two-run homer in the second and Vinny Rodgriquez's solo shot in the third.

From there, Lander scored three runs each in the fourth, sixth, seventh and eighth innings to take a 16-3 lead. Grady added a two-run homer in the fourth, while Thomas Berry scored on wild pitch. In the sixth, Lewis scored when Painter was hit by a pitch, then Berry and Weston Lawing crossed the plate on bases-loaded walks.

Graham Ramos had a two-run homer and Painter a solo in the seventh. Painter added a two-RBI double in the eighth to go along with Aaron Poole's RBI single.

Montevallo scored its final run in the ninth when Smith tripled and went home on a wild pitch.

Grady and Bess had three hits apiece, while Lunde, Wilson, Berry, Poole, Lawing, Ramos and Painter had two each.

Dane Hutcheson went 2-for-5 for Montevallo.

In the second game, Lander's Taylor Alvarez (6-1) earned the win after striking out one, walking one and allowing two earned runs on eight hits in seven innings.

Montevallo's Alex Guilford (3-1) was the loser, striking out one, walking two and allowing nine earned runs on 14 hits in five innings.

The Bearcats took a 2-0 lead in third inning on RBI singles by Lewis and Berry.

After Montevallo cut the lead to 2-1 in the third on Fulmer's RBI single, Lander added four runs in the fourth on a two-run homer by Lunde, a solo shot by Grady, and Painter's RBI single.

Bess had a sacrifice fly, while Grady had an RBI double, and Ramos and Dunn RBI singles in the fifth to increase the margin to 10-1.

Painter's grand slam – his second of the season – gave Lander a 14-1 lead, then Lewis added a three-run roundtripper later in the inning.

Lander closed out its scoring when Lawing scored on Austin Dunn's groundout in the seventh and Alex Silon drove in Ramos in the ninth.

For Lander, Ramos went 5-for-6, while Grady, Lewis, Lawing and Painter had three hits apiece.

Montevallo's Will Fulmer and Chase Bryant had two hits each.