The East Central University baseball team earned its first Great American Conference win of the 2014 season with a 12-1 decision at Tiger Field.
The Tigers (4-7, 1-3 GAC) had a group of six players with two or more hits in the game, with junior Luc Pomales leading the team with three hits and two RBIs. Senior Josh Lavender had the key hit in the bottom of the seventh to end the game, with a grand slam.
Video Interview with head coach Dino Rosato - http://youtu.be/5WoAgECvfd4
Both teams had strong defense through the first three innings, before either team was able to get on the scoreboard. ECU was the first to break the goose eggs, with two runs in the bottom of the fourth.
Junior Nick Spini led off the inning with a solo home run over the center field fence on the first pitch. Pomales and junior David Terrazas each singled, leaving Pomales on third. That allowed senior Ethan Gold to get an RBI with a sacrifice fly to center field.
The Reddies (2-9, 2-2 GAC) finally broke their scoreless streak in the top of the sixth win a single run to cut the deficit to 2-1.
The Tigers broke the game open in the bottom of the seventh, scoring 10 runs and forcing the conference run-rule into effect when the score reached 12-1.
After the first out, junior Ty Huie started the rally with a double to right center. The second out of the inning was then recorded before junior Garrett Donohoe hit a double to left center that scored the first run. Spini sent Donohoe home with a single through the right side.
Pomales hit the second home run of the game to center field to score two more run. Terrazas drew a walk and was advanced to second on a single by Gold to right field. The next run scored when junior Bryce McKee doubled down the right field line and the bases were then loaded when junior Casey Chenoweth was walked.
HSU walked in the next run, when Huie drew the base-on-balls and left the bases loaded. That set up Lavender for the game ending hit when he hit a grand slam to right center for a 12-1 score.
Junior Lucas Kaplan earned the win on the mound for the Tigers, throwing a complete game. Kaplan allowed two hits and one run and struck out eight batters.
The teams will finish the three-game league series, Saturday, Feb. 22 with a double-header slated to begin at noon at Tiger Field.