Xavier Opens BIG EAST Tourney With 9-2 Setback To Creighton

Mitch Elliott picked up a pair of hits in XU's loss to Creighton on Thursday.

Mitch Elliott picked up a pair of hits in XU's loss to Creighton on Thursday.

May 22, 2014

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BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Two big innings from Creighton (31-16-1) in the fifth and sixth innings were too much for Xavier (26-27) to overcome, as the Musketeers dropped their opening game of the 2014 BIG EAST Baseball Championship presented by New York Life to the Bluejays, 9-2.

Through the first four and a half innings the pitchers controlled the game. It took until the bottom of the fifth for Creighton to finally break through with four runs, scoring on a two-RBI triple from Brad McKewon, a sac fly by Ryan Fitzgerald and single from Mike Gerber.

The Musketeers answered in their next at-bat. Back-to-back singles from Mitch Elliott and Joe Forney to lead off the inning were followed by Daniel Rizzie's walk to load the bases. Patrick Jones drew a walk to score XU's first run. Brian Bruening then drove in the second run with a fielder's choice to second.

After Xavier's pair of runs cut the deficit to two, 4-2, in the top of the sixth, Creighton responded with five more runs to put the game out of reach for the Musketeers. Jake Peter delivered a bases loaded triple and then scored on Gerber's homer to right field that pushed the lead to 9-2.

Scott Klever was tagged with the loss after allowing nine runs on ten hits in 5.2 innings, dropping his record to 6-6 on the season. Trent Astle worked the final 2.1 frames for the Musketeers, allowing just a pair of hits.

Elliott led the Musketeers with a two-hit performance. He also scored one of Xavier's two runs on the evening. Forney and Bruening each collected a hit for XU, with Forney scoring the other run and Bruening registering an RBI.

Matt Warren ran his record to 10-1 on the season after giving up just two runs over five plus innings. McKewon, Peter and Gerber each registered multi-hit, multi-RBI games to lead Creighton at the plate.

Xavier continues its BIG EAST Championship on Friday with a 4 p.m. meeting against the loser of Thursday's nightcap between No. 2 St. John's and No. 3 Seton Hall. Live stats and video will be provided on BIGEAST.com for the contest.