The East Central University baseball team split the first two games of the Great American Conference series with Southwestern Oklahoma State at Tiger Field. The Tigers (23-17, 12-11 GAC) won the first game 2-1 in 12 innings and then fell 2-4 in the seven-inning game.
ECU saw four players tally two hits, with junior Andrew Ayrado leading the team with two hits and a .667 average. Junior Luc Pomales garnered one hit and scored once and had a team-leading two RBIs.
Junior Merrick Ardoin earned the win in the first game, throwing the last two innings. Ardoin struck out one batter and allowed no hits or runs. Junior Lucas Kaplan started the game and threw the first 7.2 innings.
Junior Icezack Flemming threw a complete game in the night cap, striking out seven batters and allowing seven hits and four runs.
The teams will wrap up the three-game series, Saturday, April 12 at 1 p.m. Before the game the Tigers will honor their six seniors on the 2014 team; Robert Buitrago, Ethan Gold, Levi Keeton, Chris Lane, Josh Lavender and Michael Mariano.
Game 1 – ECU 2, SWOSU 1 (12 Innings)
The opening game of the day was a pitchers battle threw the first four innings before the first run of the game crossed the plate. The Bulldogs (20-17, 12-11 GAC) were first to break the scoreless streak with a single run in the top of the fifth.
The Tigers were held scoreless until the bottom of the eight, when they tied the game at one. Lavender was hit by a pitch and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by junior Garrett Donohoe. Lavender went to third on a wild pitch, which allowed junior Nick Spini to earn the RBI with a single to left center.
Both teams then went three-up; three-down in the ninth to force the game into extra innings. Both teams also had a chance to end the game in the 10th, with ECU also getting a runner on in the 11th, but no one was able to score.
SWOSU also went three-up; three-down in the top of the 12th, but the Tigers then took control in the bottom of the inning. Junior David Terrazas led off with a single through the left side and was advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt attempt by junior Casey Chenoweth that left both runners on due to an error.
Junior Ariel Adut then hit into a fielder’s choice that put the runner out at third. Chenoweth and Adut were advanced to second and third on a wild pitch. Lavender was walked to load the bases, which brought senior Michael Mariano up as a pinch hitter. The senior came through for the Tigers by hitting the game-winning single up the middle for the 2-1 win.
Game 2 – SWOSU 4, ECU 2
The Bulldogs again took an early lead in the second game of the day, scoring one run in the second and three in the third for a 0-4 advantage.
The Tigers were held scoreless until the bottom of the sixth. Gold led off with a double to left center and was sent around when Pomales followed with his fourth home run of the season to cut the deficit in half, 2-4.
However, the push was not enough and ECU fell 2-4.