Fairfield visits Lamar for four-game set

Published 9:36 pm Thursday, February 23, 2017

Lamar sports information

BEAUMONT — After it braved the weather and captured four wins in the season-opening weekend, the Lamar baseball squad turns its sights to Fairfield for another four-game weekend hosted at Vincent-Beck Stadium, starting Friday at 6 p.m. in non-conference action.

The Cardinals (4-0) host a double-header with the Stags — who open their season with the weekend — that starts at 1 p.m. Saturday, and will finish the series at 11 a.m. Sunday. They are fresh off of a sweep of their home tournament, the Cardinal Classic.

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Big Red defeated Milwaukee and Illinois each twice, including an emotional 2-1 wins in 10 innings against each.

The Cardinals will stick with three-quarters of their starting rotation from last week, and all three impressed. Tanner Driskill (1-0, 0.00 ERA) will pitch for the Cardinals on Friday night. He pitched 6 2/3 scoreless frames against Milwaukee to start the season, and only allowed four hits and walked none.

Carson Lance (1-0, 4.25) pitched four innings with two earned runs allowed, and will get the ball in the early game Saturday. He struck out seven hitters in 17 batters faced. Jace Campbell (0-0, 0.00) will pitch in the late game Saturday afternoon after seven shutout innings against Illinois to open his year. He allowed five base runners, but none of them reached scoring position.

The Stags have a wealth of experience back on the mound after an NCAA Tournament run last season. Their top three starters from 2016 are all back, and will take the hill against the Cardinals.

Righty John Signore will pitch the series-opener. Last season he started 11 contests and recorded a 3-2 record on a 2.90 earned run average. He was third on the team in innings pitched (83.2), only behind fellow starters RHP Kyle Dube (6-4, 4.09) and RHP Gavin Wallace (8-5, 5.13).

Ryan O’Connor, who started six contests last season was moved to the weekend rotation this year and will pitch on Saturday. He hurled 36 2/3 innings and recorded a 0-1 record with a 5.89 ERA.

Fairfield returns only one of its best three hitters from last season, Michael Conti. He started in 46 games in 2016 and hit for a .335 average with 34 runs batted in and scored 32 runs. It also brought back infielder Mac Crispino, who notched a .292 average with 35 RBI and scored 26.

As a team last season, the Stags hit for a .279 average and popped 25 home runs, 14 triples and 82 doubles. They were a menace on the base paths with 77 stolen bases in 107 attempts.

Much like he did last season, LU’s Bryndan Arredondo is out to a hot start. He has an average that sits at .400 with four RBI and a long ball. Sophomore Robin Adames is hitting .357, followed by .333 from reigning SLC Hitter of the Year Reid Russell.

The Cardinals as a whole scored 25 runs in the first four games, aided by 34 hits and 25 drawn walks.

Lamar returns to action after the weekend with its first midweek contest of the year, at Texas, on Tuesday at 6:30. That game will be carried by KLVI-AM 560.