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CLAREMORE, Okla. (May 11, 2013) – No.4 Lubbock Christian University must win three games if they want to head to the NAIA World Series and that challenge involves a pair of "must wins" Saturday at the NAIA National Championship Opening Round tournament. Play in the Claremore Bracket continues at 1 p.m. with an elimination game between LCU and Lyon College. If the Chaps can eliminate the Scots, then they advance to a 5 p.m. game against Rogers State University.
LCU survived their first elimination game against No.11 Bellevue Friday moving their overall record to 43-16. Christian Vazquez was 3-for-5 against Bellevue giving him 90 hits this season ranking him second in the NAIA. Joel Lutz has 61 RBI this season, which ranks him fourth in the NAIA. Derek Loera improved his strikeout count to 83 and is 10-4 on the season (garnered the win Friday). As a team, the Chaps lead the NAIA in total doubles (143), doubles per game (2.466), RBI per game (7.483), home runs per game (1.19), total RBI (434) and slugging percentage (.557).
Lyon College was another team to fall victim to a heated up Rogers State University squad, losing 16-2 at the Diamond Sports Complex Friday. The Scots received the at-Large No. 11 bid as they are making their first trip to the Opening Round. They have a 42-15 record after defeating Bellevue 3-0 and falling to RSU 16-2. Lyon's Colby Rogers ranks third in the NAIA with 24 doubles and has 69 hits. He also has 50 RBI this season. Pitcher Ben Neyen has a 2.10 ERA and a total 75 strike outs. He is also ranked 13th in the NAIA with 10 wins. Five different pitchers worked on the hill in the loss against Rogers State, while Brandon Haller received the loss moving his overall record to 8-3.
A win by the Chaps would set them up to face Rogers State University. RSU entered the tournament as the No. 4 seeded team and quickly moved themselves into the Championship game. Rogers State, which entered the postseason with the 16th and final at-large bid to the NAIA playoffs, rolled to its third consecutive win, despite the low seeding, and is now the only undefeated team in the Claremore Opening Round bracket. The Hillcats, who advanced to the NAIA World Series in 2012, recorded their 10th playoff win in their last 12 tries with a 15-hit attack against Lyon as they improved to 34-22. Colton Campbell has a .404 batting average and has 72 hits this season with 50 RBI. Pitcher's Shawn Spainhoward's holds a 1.97 and teammate Brandon Bargas has 83 total strikeouts.
Saturday's game(s) will air on KJAK 92.7 FM in Lubbock, with links for online video, audio and live scoring posted on www.lcuchaps.com.