Daily Staff Report
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. - Shenandoah University claimed its second straight South Region Baseball title Saturday afternoon with a 6-4 victory over Salisbury University.
The victory sends the No. 7 Hornets (38-8) into next week's NCAA Baseball Championships at Fox Cities Stadium/Time Warner Field in Grand Chute, Wis. Shenandoah will meet Illinois Wesleyan on Friday at 8:45 p.m.
The Moline Regional champion will be crowned Sunday.
The Hornets jumped all over No. 19 Salisbury (30-13) early, scoring three runs in the bottom of the second on a three-run dinger from sophomore Cory Nelson. Nelson plated both Greg Van Sickler and Scott Van Dusseldorp, who each reached via single.
One inning later, coach Kevin Anderson's club got RBI singles from tournament Most Outstanding Player Jesse Henry and Van Dusseldorp to expand the lead to 5-0.
Shenandoah's final run came in the fourth when Keaton Neeb scored on a steal-stop with Kevin Brashears.
Freshman Vince Claudio (3-0) was outstanding, scattering six hits and one run in 6 2/3 innings of action. He walked three and struck out six.
After Bobby Stefanowicz got the Hornets out of the seventh, sophomore Kyle Scallion recorded the final six outs to send Shenandoah back to Appleton as South Region champions. He struck out four, including the last two, to secure the win.
Nelson and Van Dusseldorp both had two hits to lead the offense.
In addition to Henry earning MOP honors, Scallion, Van Dusseldorp, Van Sickler, Claudio, Nelson and Mike Smith all grabbed spots on the All-Tournament team.
The 38 wins ties a school record set last year and ensures that Shenandoah will at least equal last season's best-ever winning percentage.