Belmont Abbey junior first baseman Joey Frabasile capped off a four run Abbey eighth inning with a two out, three run opposite field home run to give the Crusaders a 9-6 win over the visiting Lenoir-Rhyne Bears in the 2011 season opener. The Abbey is now 1-0, while Lenoir-Rhyne drops to 0-2.
The Crusaders trailed 6-3 after six complete innings but scored six unanswered runs, plating two in the seventh and four in the eighth to seal the comeback win.
In the seventh, the Abbey scored twice to cut the lead to one. Catcher Kyle Buchanan reached on a fielder's choice and moved to third on a double to left by Frabasile. Tim Dye followed with a seeing-eye single to left, bringing home Buchanan, to pull the Abbey to within 6-4. Two pitches later, Frabsile scored on a wild pitch to close the gap to 6-5.
The Bears went down in order in the eighth, and the Abbey seized the lead for good in the bottom of the frame. Michael Vargas drew a one out walk, and after a strikeout, Caleb Shore was issued a free pass. After a pitching change, Buchanan laced a single to center, scoring Vargas to tie the game at six.
Three pitches later, Frabasile ripped an opposite field homer to right center, his first, to put the Abbey ahead 9-6.
Jordan Cudney retired the side in order in the top of the ninth to pick up the save. Joey Kopp earned the win after working two scoreless innings without surrendering a hit, striking out one. Cole Erxleben was charged with the loss. He gave up two runs on no hits in an inning and a third.
Buchanan had three of the Abbey's 11 hits, recording a single, double and triple. He drove in one and scored three times. Frabasile finished two for three with four RBI and three runs scored. Shore and Matt Mazzolla both had a pair of hits.
Mike Gasque led L-R with three hits in four at bats. Ben Adams drove in three runs, two coming on a home run in the sixth.Related Item: Box Score