BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - No. 21 Campbellsville seized the early lead and then held on for the 5-3 victory over host No. 24 Union Wednesday in a battle of NAIA Top 25 squads.
The Tigers scored four runs through the first three innings and led 5-0 before the Bulldogs attempt a comeback. However, Union came up short as Campbellsville improved to 29-13 overall following the win.
Union drops to 29-11 on the season.
The Bulldogs return to action Saturday and Sunday with a three-game Appalachian Athletic Conference series at Milligan (Tenn.). Saturday's twinbill is set to begin at 1 p.m. with Sunday's nine-inning tilt slated for 2 p.m.
Campbellsville took advantage of a throwing error in the first in scoring the game's first run. With one out and a runner on first, pinch-runner Jameel Ziadeh stole second and advanced to third on an overthrow by Corey Estep (Harlan, Ky.). Brian Chase then grounded out to second, allowing Ziadeh to score easily.
The Tigers made it 2-0 in the second thanks to a Craig Edwards RBI double. In the third, Chase made it a 4-0 contest with a two-run home run to left field.
It remained a four-run game until the sixth when Campbellsville collected two-out, run-scoring single from Tyler Craig.
Down 5-0 in the bottom of the sixth, Union scratched out two unearned runs to pull within 5-2. With runners on the corners and two outs, Steve Scheelk (Kansas City, Mo.) drove in a run on an infield hit to push the Bulldogs' first run across. Josh Longbrake (St. Cloud, Fla.) followed with a single up the middle to score Donnie Popham (Louisville, Ky.) to make it a three-run game.
Union loaded the bases in the bottom of the eighth with one out, but only managed to squeak out one run when Longbrake reached on a fielder's choice, cutting the margin to 5-3.
In the ninth, the Bulldogs had the top of the lineup stepping up to the plate. But Tiger closer Spencer Frantz set them down in order for his first save on the year.
Longbrake and Scheelk went finished 2-for-4 at the plate for Union with Longbrake picking up two RBIs and Scheelk one.
Matt Modlinski (St. Charles, Ill.) suffered the loss to fall to 0-2 on the season, giving up four runs, three earned, on five hits, no walks and one hit batter in 2/ 1/3 innings of work. Drew Chamberlain (Cumberland, Ky.) pitched will in relief as did Jason Parsons (Hamilton, Ohio). Chamberlain lasted a season-best 4 2/3 innings and gave up one earned on four hits and two walks with one strikeouts. Parsons threw two shutout innings, giving up two hits and striking out two.
For Campbellsville, Chase finished 1-for-5 but drove in three runs. Michael Caleb and Richie Rowland each had two hits, while Ziadeh scored three runs.
Caleb collected the win, improving to 3-2 on the season. He last six innings, allowing two unearned runs on seven hits and two walks with three strikeouts.