Baseball gets off to rocky start at UNC-Wilmington
Sophomore center fielder Dan Gulbransen went 3-for-4 with a double and the Dolphins held an early 3-0 lead but the JU baseball team got a rude awakening to the 2011 season opener with a 20-7 loss to UNC-Wilmington, Friday evening at Brooks Field.

JU (0-1) scored three runs in the top of the first but UNCW (1-0) would score 10 runs in its first two innings to take control of the contest.

“We got off to a great start and had some good innings but they always had an answer for us,” said JU head coach Terry Alexander. “It’s going to be a learning process early on and we just need to make sure that we make improvements with each game. We’ll see how things look when we play tomorrow.”

Senior Chris Kaminski (0-1) was tagged with the loss after allowing 10 runs on eight hits in 1.1 innings of work. Freshman Adam Maxon made his collegiate debut a good one by hurling 2.2 innings scoreless relief.

Justin Bradley (1-0) earned the win after allowing four runs (two earned) on five hits in five innings.

Along with Gulbransen, junior shortstop Jimmy Howick finished 2-for-3 with an RBI while junior first baseman Kevin Lehane hit a three-run homer.

Michael Bass and Cameron Cockman each led the Seahawks with three hits while four others added multiple hits, including Matt Campbell who added a home run and a game-high four RBI.

JU took a 3-0 lead in the first when sophomore right fielder Adam Brett Walker hit an RBI single to left, Howick drove in a run with a sacrifice fly to right before Walker scored in a throwing error.

UNCW cut the margin to 3-1 in the bottom of the first on an RBI single by Hill but the Seahawks would take a 10-3 advantage after plating nine runs on seven hits and two Dolphin errors.

The Dolphins would make it 10-4 when Walker drove in a run with a fielder’s choice in the top of the fifth but UNCW would answer with five runs on two hits and two more Dolphin errors in the bottom of the frame.

JU would cut the margin to 15-7 in the seventh when Lehane hit a three-run shot to center field but the Seahawks would answer again with five runs on four hits in the bottom of the inning.

The Dolphins and Eagles will continue the series on Saturday at 2 p.m. The contest can be followed by livestats and radio broadcast by logging onto