The VandyBoys faced their final weekend non-conference opponent this weekend as they went to battle with the Lions of Loyola Marymount. Vanderbilt had a nice opportunity to get the bats going before conference play began, but alas, they struggled at the plate. It seems silly to worry about Tim Corbin and company this early in the season, especially when they have not dropped a weekend series yet. Nevertheless, the lack of firepower on offense, not just this weekend, but this season, has warranted some legitimate concerns.
Friday, March 10: Vanderbilt 2 LMU 1
When the bats have failed, the pitching has prevailed. The VandyBoys had another sensational pitching performance from starting pitcher Carter Holton and Sam Hliboki; these were the only two arms that Vanderbilt used all game long. Holton started the game and pitched a magnificent 6 innings and only allowing three hits and recording 7 strikeouts. Hliboki came in to shut the door on the Lions and that is what he did. Hliboki got 9 straight outs and never gave the Lions a chance.
On the flip side, the VandyBoys continued to struggle at the plate. What might have been chalked up to rust at one point seems to be a real deal problem for Vanderbilt. The ‘Dores recorded 6 hits and left just as many on base.
Saturday, March 11: Vanderbilt 2 LMU 0
Vanderbilt was able to clinch a series victory against LMU on Saturday with a 2-0 win against the Lions. Pitcher Hunter Owen threw an impressive 6 shutout innings on the afternoon and Nick Maldonado came in to close out the game and threw 3 innings without giving up a hit. Vanderbilt’s pitching Saturday continued to limit arms coming out of the bullpen only using two pitchers in the afternoon.
Sunday, March 12: LMU 9 Vanderbilt 6
Vanderbilt had an off-day on the mound Sunday as they dropped the finale of the series 9-6. Pitcher Devin Futrell had a rough 4.1 innings pitcher where he allowed 3 runs on 2 hits and 2 walks. During the previous matchups on Friday and Saturday, Vandy barely had to dip into their pen at all but on Sunday they were forced to. Greysen Carter, Thomas Schultz, Jack Anderson, and JD Thompson all made appearances in the bout on Sunday. All of the pitchers allowed at least one run except for JD Thompson, who only faced two batters.
Vanderbilt has some success at the plate on Saturday but it was not enough. The VandyBoys only score 1 run in the 4th and the 5th but were able to plate 4 in the ninth. Even though the offense came up short, RJ Schreck continues to impress as he went 2-4 with 2 RBIs on Sunday. Schreck continues on his tear as he bats .317 on the season.
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