Shocks Win State Farm MVC Tournament
Courtesy:Wichita State
Release:05/23/2009
Catcher Cody Lassley was 2-for-5 with with an RBI double.
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WICHITA -- Wichita State (30-25) worked through 12 walks and forced Creighton (31-25) to leave 17 runners on base to take the 2009 State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament championship on Saturday night at Eck Stadium in front of 4,904 fans.

The Shockers pieced together four runs, led by a 3-for-4 performance from Clint McKeever, who also had an RBI and a run scored. Tournament Most Valuable Player Ryan Engrav added two hits, a walk, and a run scored, to go along with Tyler Grimes and Cody Lassley's two hits apiece.

Brian Flynn got the win on the mound for WSU, working 2.1 innings, allowing just one run on four hits, while walking four and striking out two. Reliever Chance Sossamon had the lock-down performance of the night, getting the save with two innings of perfect relief. The freshman struck out one and walked none.

The Shockers scored one run against starter Greg Hellhake in 3.2 innings, but roughed up Jack VanLeur to give him the loss. VanLeur pitched 1.2 innings, allowing three runs on six hits with one strikeout and no walks.

The Creighton offense tied a conference tournament record with 17 runners left on base. T.J. Roemmich was 3-for-5 with a run scored, while Darin Ruf and Nick Becker each had two hits.

Wichita State starter Charlie Lowell started what would become the theme of the night for the Shockers, battling out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the first. Lowell walked the bases loaded, but got Carson Vitale to ground out to end the inning.

WSU took advantage right away in the home half of the first with an early 1-0 lead. Shortstop Tyler Grimes doubled and moved to second on a Cody Lassley sacrifice bunt. Grimes scored from second on line-drive single up the middle by clean-up hitter Clint McKeever.

With Lowell battling his control, the Bluejays took advantage of a Shocker throwing error when T.J. Roemmich moved to third after a bad throw on a steal attempt at second. Roemmich later scored on an RBI groundout by Scott Thornburg.

Lowell got through the third, but walked the bases loaded again in the fourth. Reliever Remington Johnson entered and got the next two batters to pop up to end the threat, and leave the score tied at one apiece.

Creighton loaded the bases on Johnson in the fifth, with two walks and a single by Roemmich. Johnson got Jimmy Swift swinging for the second out, and WSU went to lefty Brian Flynn to face left-handed pinch hitter Ian Dike. Flynn got Dike looking to end the fifth.

The Shockers took advantage of CU's missed opportunities in the sixth to grab the lead. With two outs and nobody on, Chance Sossamon and Tyler Grimes ripped back-to-back singles to set the table for Cody Lassley. Lassley found a spot down the left field line for an RBI double and a 2-0 Shocker lead.

Flynn worked around two runners on in the sixth, getting Nick Becker to groundout to end the inning. But, Creighton loaded the bases again in the seventh with two outs, but Flynn was up to the task once again. This time, Elliot Soto grounded out to McKeever at first.

In the bottom of the seventh, the Shockers tacked two more on the board with some timely hitting and a defensive mistake by Creighton. McKeever got it started with a one-out single and moved to third on a single by Ryan Engrav. Ryan Jones came to the plate and hit a cue shot to CU reliever Jack VanLeur. As McKeever started for home, VanLeur turned toward second to start a double play, but neither Soto or Vicente Cafaro covered second, giving VanLeur only a play to first to get Jones. McKeever scored and the inning stayed alive for the Shockers. Chris O'Brien hit the next pitch into right center for an RBI single to score Engrav from second and push the Shocker lead to 4-1.

The Bluejays added a run against Flynn in the top of the eighth with nobody out, but Sossamon entered and closed the door with two perfect innings.

The Shockers will await their fate when the NCAA announces the tournament field and regional sites early next week.

--Missouri Valley Conference--
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