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Tyler McPeak
Tyler McPeak hit his 18th home run of the season, a new LR record for most home runs in a season.
photo courtesy of Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics

L-R Baseball Ends Regular Season With Non-Conference Win

The Lenoir-Rhyne Baseball Team ended their regular season slate on a high note by defeating Belmont Abbey, 11-6 on the road Monday.

The Bears were able to overcome an early four-run deficit to score nine unanswered runs the rest of the way, powered by a six-run fifth inning.

Providing the heartbeat for the LR offense, Sal Carricato and Tyler McPeak provided back-to-back 2-RBI hits in the fifth frame. With a double and single, respectively, the Bears surged out in front of the Crusaders and earned the series split.

McPeak also cemented himself in the record books with his two-run home run in the first inning. With the trip around the bases, the graduate student surpassed Evan Taylor (2010) for the most home runs in a single season with 18.

It was a carousel day for the Bears bullpen, with LR using 11 different pitchers. However, it was Chipper Mcginnis that came away with his first win of the season and his first since 2020.

Carricato and McPeak had monster days for the Bears with each recording four RBIs; McPeak had a slightly better performance with three hits and three runs, compared to Carricato’s two hits and one run.

There were plenty of strikeouts to go around. LR struck out 13 opposing batters while Belmont Abbey retired 11 batters at the plate. Both programs will look back at some missed opportunities as there were a combined 25 base runners stranded. The Bears left 13 runners on base with the Crusaders not sitting too far behind with 12 runners left on base.

LR was able to overcome some early mistakes as well after they committed three errors in the first two innings. Zach Evans also had a great day at the plate with a 3-for-5 performance with two runs.

LR continues to keep its success up on the final day of the regular season. LR has not lost in its last game of the regular season since 2012. This contest was the 69th meeting between the two programs; LR leads the all-time series, 39-30.

The Bears end their road regular season schedule with a 15-5 record. LR went 21-5 in non-conference games in 2023; winning seven series against non-conference foes.

The Bears record in mid-week matchups was 10-3. They won their eight final mid-week contests after starting 2-3 in those situations.

The Bears are 36-14 on the season. Lenoir-Rhyne will move into the postseason with the opening round of the 2023 SAC Baseball Tournament. The Bears will start play on Friday, April 28 against Carson-Newman with a scheduled 3:00 p.m. first pitch at Newberry, S.C.