Bengard has allowed two runs or less in seven of nine starts.
Courtesy: Rachel McDaniel
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Great Friday
Courtesy: CBU  
Release: 04/06/2012
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RIVERSIDE, Calif. --- Luke Esquerra and Cole Bullard had clutch two-RBI singles, and Jon Bengard dominated for seven innings to lead California Baptist University to a 7-2 non-conference win over Concordia Friday afternoon.

The win is the Lancers' 30th of the season, their third straight 30-win season and seventh in nine seasons under Head Coach Gary Adcock. They are 30-7.

The NAIA's No. 11-ranked Eagles fall to 25-12.

Bengard (9-0), who has quickly become the ace of the Lancers' staff, scattered five hits and allowed two runs while striking out six in picking up his ninth win in 10 appearances this year.

"Today was all about the transformation of Jon Bengard," said Adcock. "We needed to play well after not playing well yesterday, and he was in attack mode all day. For a program that prides itself on development, Jon's been the poster child. That's a guy who hasn't thrown much the past two years, and he's been observant and has implemented everything he's heard in the dugout."

Bengard gave up a two-run homer in the first and that was it. Over the next six innings, he allowed just three hits and only one runner to reach third base.

"The difference for Jon was that he's changed his mindset," said Adcock. "We've added two pitches, and his velocity has increased, but more than anything he's changed his mindset and his temperament. After giving up the home run, he was asking for the next ball before the ball left the yard. He wouldn't have done that two years ago. I think that's the biggest difference."

With the Lancers trailing 2-1 in the second, Esquerra hit a pop up down the left field line that got up in the wind and landed between a trio of Eagle defenders. Blair Moore and Zach Esquerra, both of whom walked, came around to score to give the Lancers a 3-2 lead they didn't lose.

Both teams finished with seven hits apiece. The Lancers also took advantage of six walks.

The Lancers led 4-2 in the eighth when Andy Crowley singled and Zach Esquerra doubled, both on 0-2 pitches. Bullard then hit the first pitch he saw from Josh White up the middle past a drawn-in infield, driving in Crowley and Esquerra to give the Lancers a 6-2 lead.

Matt Daugherty tossed two scoreless innings, striking out three, for his fourth save.

Kevin Odom hit a solo homer, his fifth of the season, to get the Lancers within 2-1 in the first inning. Crowley and Zach Esquerra both scored twice. Moore, who walked and also doubled in the sixth, extended his streak of reaching base safely to 35 straight games.



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