Messiah drops Christopher Newport
Falcons' Lapp shuts down top-seeded Captains in opener
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - Messiah followed a victory in the Commonwealth Championships 10 days ago with a 3-1 win against top-seeded Christopher Newport in the first game of the 2012 NCAA Regionals.
Sophomore Jon Lapp was the story for Messiah, as he became the first Falcons' player to earn a win in the NCAA Regionals since 2008.
Lapp completed nine innings, allowing just three hits and one unearned run. He struck out three batters without walking a single CNU batter.
The Falcons tagged CNU starting pitcher Greg Goldsmith for three runs in the third inning, with Goldsmith completing seven innings and allowing just five hits.
The Falcons' pivotal third inning started with a leadoff double down the right-field line by Zach Brubaker. Matt Turman followed with a bunt single down the third-base line, with Brubaker advancing to third on the play. Sam Tajiri, the Commonwealth Championships' Most Outstanding Player, then reached on a single to Goldsmith. The infield hit broke the scoreless tie as Brubaker crossed home plate with Messiah's first run.
With runners on first and second and still no outs, Paul Mellinger laid down a sac bunt towards the Captains' first baseman to move Turman and Tajiri to second and third. Ryan Brown followed with a sac fly to right-center to score Turman, with Wes Hollenbach stroking an RBI single to left-center to push the Messiah lead to 3-0.
The win for Messiah is its first in the NCAA Regionals' tournament since 2008. That season, the Falcons defeated Penn State Behrend 8-1 in a game played in Newark, N.J. The winning pitcher on that day was Dan Kern, earning the victory with eight innings of one-run ball.