NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Belmont University Baseball defeated Bowling Green 5-2 on Friday evening behind another impressive outing from senior pitcher Casey Queener (Brentwood, Tenn.).
Queener, reigning OVC Pitcher of the Week, was nearly untouchable, throwing seven complete innings. He allowed just two hits and walked two, striking out an impressive 11 on the evening. He set the tone early for the Bruins, forcing a quick three outs in the top of the first.
In the bottom of the inning, junior Chandler Adkins (Knoxville, Tenn.) tallied the first hit of the night with a single to center field and stole second to put himself in scoring position. He was stranded however, keeping things scoreless after the first inning.
After the second-consecutive one, two, three inning for Queener, Belmont got on the board in the bottom of the second. Sophomore Logan Jarvis (Franklin, Tenn.) worked a leadoff walk, and then stole second and advanced to third on a balk. Jarvis scored the first run of the afternoon when freshman John Behrends (Chattanooga, Tenn.) placed a ground ball in the perfect spot allowing the run to cross home plate for a 1-0 lead after two complete innings.
Queener struck out the side in the top of the third to preserve the lead and kept the Falcons off the board in the fourth.
After a scoreless bottom of the third, Belmont plated two more runs in the fourth. Senior Devon Gardner (Maryville, Tenn.) and junior Hagan Severance (Brentwood, Tenn.) worked walks to put runners on first and second. Freshman Grayson Taylor (Cullman, Ala.) plated both runners on a double to deep right center field, giving Belmont a 3-0 lead.
After a walk and a base hit in the top of the fifth, Bowling Green made its biggest threat of the night thus far. A walk and a base hit plated one run for the Falcons in the inning tightening the lead 3-1.
After a scoreless sixth, Bowling Green struck again in the top of the seventh. The leadoff hitter swung on the first pitch of the inning for a solo home run, narrowing the Belmont lead 3-2. The Falcons put one more aboard in the innings with a walk, but three more Queener strikeouts ended the inning with little damage.
Sophomore Logan Bowen (Bowling Green, Ky.) took over the mound for the Bruins in the top of the eighth to try and close the game out. Bowen was extremely effective in the eighth, forcing three quick outs to keep Bowling Green off the board.
In the bottom of the eighth, The Bruins made a two-out rally to add a couple of insurance runs. Severance worked a walk to put a runner aboard and Taylor followed it with a single through the left side to put runners on the corners. Senior Zach Ehrhart (Mt. Juliet, Tenn.) sent a blooper a ball to center field to plate Severance, giving Belmont a 4-2 lead. Adkins plated the final run of the night with an infield hit to increase the Belmont lead 5-2.
Bowen returned to the mound, needing three outs the preserve the win and notch his first save of the season. He did so in impressive fashion, retiring the Falcons in order for the 5-2 victory.
Belmont will be back in action for game two and three of the series against the Falcons. The double header will start at 12:00 p.m. CT with game two to follow.