Greeneville, Tenn. - Kellen Moman connected on his fifth home run in the first six games of the 2010 season, but Tusculum pitcher Tyler Collins struck out 10 Tornados in six innings as Brevard fell in the first game of the weekend series to the Pioneers, 9-4.
Jacob White (0-2) took the loss for Brevard (0-6, 0-4 SAC), giving up seven earned runs in five innings, while striking out six. Tommy Yearty and Jacob Koontz finished the game with three innings of scoreless relief, combining for a pair of strikeouts in the loss.
Tusculum (6-6, 2-2 SAC) was led by Collins’ (2-1) 10 strikeout performance on the mound, while Sean Finucane and Aaron Guinn each drove in a pair of RBIs for the Pioneers in the contest.
Rolondo Bonner opened up the scoring in the game for Tusculum in the bottom of the first, reaching base with a leadoff walk. A stolen base and a fly out in foul territory down the right field line put Bonner on third, where he scored on a wild pitch by White that skipped past Brevard catcher Matthew Ennis.
The Tornados evened the score in the top of the third as Ennis led off the inning with single to left field on a full count. A sacrifice by Eric Renegar pushed Ennis to second, where he scored two batters later as Stephen Mullis drove a double to right center, bringing the freshman catcher home.
Tusculum battled back, plating three in the third as Sean Cotton drove in Bonner and Finucane doubled home Cotton and Nate Grabowski to put the score at 4-1 with one out in the third. White buckled down to catch Payden Houser looking at strike three and Paul Finger went down swinging to end the inning.
Tusculum pushed across two more in the fourth as Guinn and Eric Barclay both touched home to put the score at 6-1, but Brevard was able to counter with a run of their own in the top of the fifth as Renegar placed a two-out double to left center with Kramer Clark placing a base hit to right center to score the freshman shortstop to cut the lead to 6-2.
The Pioneers added three more runs in the bottom half of the fifth to put the score at 9-2 with Guinn driving in Houser and Finucane before coming around to score himself on a passed ball.
The score would remain the same until the top of the eighth before Moman led off the inning with his fifth home run of the season, coming off of Blake Burnett to straightaway centerfield. Brevard loaded the bases with one out as Matthew Pruitt walked, Ron Patterson singled to center and M.A. Dozier was hit by a pitch, bringing in relief pitcher Ty Collins. Renegar was able to bring Pruitt home by reaching on a fielding error by the Tusculum second baseman, but Collins was able to escape the inning, inducing a grounder by Clark to end the Tornados last scoring threat.
The Tornados and Pioneers complete the three-game set with a doubleheader scheduled for tomorrow in Greeneville, Tenn., with first pitch at Pioneer Park scheduled for 1 p.m.