Baseball earns midweek victory

North Alabama infielder Brandt Holland at the plate in the Lion’s midweek home game against Trevecca Nazarene April 4. UNA improved to 21-14 overall with the victory.

by Baseball Beat Writer Nick Griffin

A strong pitching effort combined with good base running helped the North Alabama baseball team earn a 4-0 mid-week win over region opponent Trevecca Nazarene Tuesday at Mike Lane Field.

Junior Shane Priest was the starter for UNA and threw five no-hit innings with eight strikeouts. The Lions surrendered just one hit in the entire game.

Senior Bradley Bailey and junior Channing Wall came in relief to finish out the game.

UNA netted four runs despite having just two hits the entire game, including a solo home run from junior infielder Kyle Hubbach.

Head coach Mike Keehn said he is pleased with the improvements the team has made in mid-week performances. UNA is 8-6 in non-weekend games on the season, compared to a 13-8 Gulf South Conference record.

“We haven’t been able to swing the bats during our mid-week games, but I was glad to see Shane Priest pitch extremely well,” Keehn said. “(Bradley) Bailey pitched well, and we played good defense. We made good plays and didn’t make mistakes, so pitching, and defense is really what won us the game tonight.”

The game against the Trojans was Preist’s third start of the season, and Priest said it was a memorable one.

“It was definitely my best outing,” Priest said. “I had my slider working really good today so I got some good chases. We have a really good defense so I knew they’d back me up if they put it in play. So I was just trying to fill up the zone.”

Priest said he was a bit disappointed he did not get a full shot at a no-hitter, but Keehn pulled him after five innings to make sure he is ready against Mississippi College.

“I would have loved to stay in,” Priest said. “That doesn’t happy very often where you’ve got a no-hitter going for you. I understand though, I need to be ready for this weekend.”

The weekend series against the Choctaws will take place April 8-9 in Clinton, Mississippi.