Bugna, Patton, Gonnella Pitch Tigers Past Citadel
Courtesy: Athletics Media Relations  
Release: 02/20/2011
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Tyler Bugna earned his first win as a Tiger on Sunday.
Courtesy:Scott Thornton

CHARLESTON, S.C. - Senior righthanders Tyler Bugna and Spencer Patton teamed up with freshman righthander Brandon Gonnella to pitch a five-hitter as the Tigers (2-2) closed out weekend play at The Citadel Memorial Challenge with a 7-1 victory over The Citadel (1-2) at Riley Park on Sunday afternoon.

With the victory, the Tigers finished The Citadel Memorial Challenge with a 2-2 record. They split two games against The Citadel and two games against Gardner-Webb.

Bugna, who has been hindered by injuries during his first two seasons with the Tigers, threw five innings and allowed one run on four hits against the Bulldogs. He walked two batters and had one wild pitch. His wild pitch in the second inning scored the only run of the game for The Citadel.

It was only the second start of his career for the Tigers.

Patton, who has also battled injuries during his career, pitched three shutout innings. In three innings, he allowed one hit and pitched to only ten batters. Patton, who pitched only ten innings in 2010 due to an elbow injury, also had three strikeouts.

Gonnella nailed down the victory with a scoreless ninth inning.

The Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when first baseman Justin Mackert doubled, advanced to third base on a sacrifice bunt and scored on a wild pitch.

After being shut out on two hits through four innings, the Tigers broke through in the fifth inning and grabbed a lead.

Sophomore catcher Andrew Parker led off the inning with a double to centerfield. He advanced to third base when freshman Dominic Fratantuono reached base on an error by third baseman Drew Dekerlegand.

Making the first start of his college career, freshman second baseman Pat Fitzgerald lined an RBI single to rightfield, scoring Parker with the tying run. Fratantuono, who advanced to third base on the single by Fitzgerald, scored the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly by senior shortstop Nick Natoli.

In the sixth inning, the Tigers added to their lead. With one out, senior Steve Rice singled and Parker drew a walk. At that point, David Leeth relieved Justin Russell on the mound for the Bulldogs. A walk to pinch hitter Brady Baxter loaded the bases. Rice scored to increase the lead to 3-1 when Fitzgerald hit a sacrifice fly to rightfield. Leeth pitched out of the jam by retiring Natoli on a fly ball to tight.

Patton relieved Bugna to start the bottom of the sixth inning and retired the Bulldogs in order.

In the seventh inning, the Tigers increased the lead to 5-1 when Parker's bases-loaded single drove in two runs.

A two-run double by senior third baseman Chris Wychock in the eighth inning increased the Tigers' lead to 7-1.

Gonnella clinched the win by pitching a scoreless ninth inning.

Wychock led the Tigers' nine-hit attack with three base hits and two runs batted in. Parker went two-for-two with three walks and two RBI's.

The Tigers will return to action next weekend when they play three neutral site games against Delaware State, Minnesota and Northwestern in Winston-Salem, N.C.

TIGER TALES: In the four games at The Citadel, the Tigers were outscored, 32-17 ... But they managed to split four games ... Tiger hitters were held to a .216 batting average over the weekend ... The Tigers had six doubles and two home runs ... Wychock led the Tigers in batting with a .400 batting average, three runs scored, a double, a home run and four runs batted in.

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