Lomascolo's Arm, Zubillaga's Hit Propel Baseball to World Series Opening Win
CARY, NC -- Catawba claimed a 2-1 win over the University of Indianapolis in its first-ever NCAA II College World Series game on Sunday afternoon at the USA Baseball National Training Complex. The fourth-ranked Catawba Indians got a clutch hit from Julio Zubillaga (China Grove, NC/Carson HS) and an outstanding pitching performance from Nick Lomascolo (Mooresville, NC/Lake Norman HS) in winning their opening game. Catawba improves to 44-15 and will next face the winner of the Delta State/St. Mary’s (TX) game on Tuesday night at 4 p.m. The Greyhounds, ranked 11th in NCAA II, fall to 46-15 and will face the loser of the earlier mentioned game at 3 p.m. on Tuesday.
Lomascolo outdueled Indianapolis’ Donovan Drake, who entered the game with a sub 2.00 ERA and five shutouts. The Catawba junior lefty pitched into the ninth before getting help from Craig Brooks (Monroe, NC/Parkwood HS), who came on to get the final two outs and earn his fourth save. Lomascolo, now 10-4, allowed the single run off five hits with a pair of walks and eight strikeouts.
Neither team found much success in the opening innings as Lomascolo had allowed just a single and Drake a mere walk over four frames. The Greyhounds threatened in the fifth, getting two on with one out, but Lomascolo got out of trouble with a double play ground out to end the inning. Catawba would get its first two runners of the fifth on base, but could not advance them further.
Indianapolis drew first blood with a run in the sixth. Matt Maringer’s double with one out put runners on second and third and pinch-hitter Nate Koontz was able to get Scott Lawley home with the game’s first run on a sacrifice fly.
Catawba came right back. Chris Dula (Troutman, NC/S. Iredell HS) led off the Indian sixth with a single and stole second with one out. Ethan Satterfield (Madison, NC/McMichael HS) and Garrett Furr (Gold Hill, NC/Mt. Pleasant HS) followed with walks to load the bases. Zubillaga was able to single up the middle to plate both Dula and Satterfield to put the Indians on top.
Lomascolo was able to work a pair of 1-2-3 innings before issuing a leadoff walk to Jake Hartley in the ninth. The lefty got a big out, working back from a 3-1 count to strikeout Koontz for the first out. Brooks then entered and got a pair of fly outs to end the game.
Catawba managed just three hits. Underwood had picked up the first Indian hit in the fifth. Zubillaga reached all three times at the plate as he also drew a pair of walks. Lomascolo became just the sixth Catawba pitcher to reach double-digit wins in a season.
VIDEO: Indianapolis Post-Game Interview with Coach Gantt
VIDEO: Indianapolis Post-Game Interview with C. Dula
National ChampionshipRelated Item: Box Score