The Concordia-Irvine Eagles won their first-ever national championship. Results from the sixth and final day of the NAIA Baseball National Championship, in Lewiston, ID:
Concordia-Irvine 9, Lubbock Christian 3
The Eagles opened the scoring in the top of the third inning with an RBI single by 3B Danny Casey. The Chaparrals took a brief 2-1 lead in the bottom of the third when SS Ryan Burnaman reached on a single, and scored on an error. Courtesy runner Brett Morte scored the second run on a ground out. The Eagles took the lead for good in the fourth, when 2B Robbie Knowles hit a bases loaded triple.
The Chaps got one back in the bottom of the fourth on a home run by RF Austin Stewart. After that, the score stayed 4-3 until the ninth inning. The Eagles got five insurance runs in the top of the ninth. The first key play was a triple by CF Matt Ivanoff with one out. The Chaps brought the infield and outfield in close for the next batter, LF Kyle Konicek. The Chaps also sent in Tyler Curtis, who got the win in the first game of the day, to pitch. Konicek proceeded to hit what would normally have been a sacrifice fly, but it went over the head of the right fielder for another triple. The Eagles eventually sent 11 batters to the plate in the inning, and the Chaps used four pitchers. The game ended on a double play.
Blake Harrison went the distance for the Eagles, threw 111 pitches. He allowed two earned runs on six hits, didn't walk a batter, struck out three. Casey and RF Ryan Sheeks stole bases. Shane Ingram got the loss for the Chaps. Attendance: 3,075
Ivanoff was voted Most Valuable Player, and received the Charles Berry Hustle Award. Click here for the all-tournament team. The was the first-ever championship for a team from the Golden State Athletic Conference. The Eagles were unranked in the NAIA coaches' poll, but were #14 in the ISR, and #1 in strength of schedule, going into the Opening Round.