|CU lefty throws a no-hitter|
|Saturday, February 25, 2012|
LEBANON -- Cumberland lefty Chipper Smith threw a seven inning no-hitter Saturday, downing Point Park 5-0, salvaging a doubleheader split with the Pioneers at Stockton Field.
Smith, who finished with 14 strikeouts, allowed just two baserunners on a hit batsman and walk in the top of the sixth inning after retiring the first 15 hitters for the Pioneers (2-2). . The native of Valencia, California evened his record at 2-2 with the gem.
"I had a pretty good slider and a changeup going," Smith said after the game, "our defense made a couple of plays when I needed 'em. It wasn't the first time I'd gone deep into a game with a no-hitter. I just wanted to finish."
"He's pitched well so far this season," said CU coach Woody Hunt, "we needed a good performance after the way we played in the opener."
Saturday's opener saw the Bulldogs lose 3-2 in extra innings -- allowing three unearned runs. Cumberland commited four errors in the game and stranded baserunners in scoring position several times.
CU dropped the first game, 3-2, in eight innings, with CU giving up a pair of unearned runs in the final inning and wasting an outstanding start from Keith Kirby.
Sam Lind and Mike Mandarino each had two-run doubles and Josh McGee added a run-scoring single in the 5-0 victory for the Bulldogs, who were playing their first games in eight days.
Smith offered his condolences to teammate Will Henderson, who's father died unexpectedly on Friday.
"We're all thinking about Will and his family," Smith said. The no-hitter was the first for the CU program since Jared Garsnick turned the trick against Freed-Hardeman April 24, 2004.
The Bulldogs stand at 7-5 on the season after the doubleheader split and start stretch of nine consecutive games on the road.
SCHEDULE CHANGE -- Because of forecasted inclement weather, Cumberland’s baseball game at Tennessee Wesleyan has been moved to Tuesday at 1 p.m. in Athens.
Weather forecasts call for storms and possibly severe weather on Wednesday when the game was originally scheduled against 18th-ranked Tennessee Wesleyan.
The contest starts a nine-game road swing for the Bulldogs that includes a conference -opening series versus Mid-Continent University this weekend in Union City, Tenn., and five contests over Spring Break in Daytona Beach, Fla.