Baseball tops La Salle 9-2 in season opener

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BUIES CREEK, N.C. – Will Albertson and Danny Pardo both tallied three hits and Campbell defeated La Salle 9-2 to open the 2014 baseball season Saturday at Jim Perry Stadium.

Campbell (1-0) scored in each of the game's first four innings to take a 5-0 lead in the fifth inning over La Salle (0-1).

The Camels added three more runs in the sixth on RBI base hits from Albertson and Elijah Trail, with Steven Leonard coming around on a throwing error after stealing third. Leonard added a RBI in the eighth, giving Campbell a 9-1 lead.

Albertson, a sophomore from Sophia, N.C., went 3-for-4, driving in and scoring two. Pardo, a freshman outfielder making his Camel debut, also posted a 3-for-4 night, adding a double and a run scored.

Leonard, Kyle Leady and Trail all added two hits apiece, with Leady scoring twice.

Heath Bowers (1-0) picked up the win for CU, going six scoreless innings with six strikeouts, three walks and five hits. Bobby Thorson allowed two runs, one earned, on two hits with a strikeout and two walks in two innings of relief.

Freshman Landon Tilley struck out one and surrendered a hit, pitching the game's final frame.

Shawn O'Neill (0-1) was charged with the loss, allowing five runs, three earned on seven hits with two punchouts and two walks. Brian Maher and Andrew Craig both allowed two runs in relief, while Greg Krug pitched a scoreless eighth.

Josh Savakinus led the Explorers with a pair of hits, while Mark Williams and George Smith, Jr. each scored runs.

Campbell stole eight bases in the win, including three from Leonard, a redshirt sophomore transfer. La Salle stranded 11 baserunners, leaving the bases loaded twice in the loss.

The Camels and Explorers will complete their three-game series tomorrow with a noon doubleheader. Campbell travels to East Carolina on Tuesday, Feb. 18, taking on the Pirates at 4 p.m.