The East Central University baseball team dropped a pair of Great American Conference games to Southern Nazarene at Cypert Athletic Field. The Tigers (7-21, 1-13 GAC) lost 3-4 and 1-5 to the Crimson Storm (10-16, 5-12 GAC).
ECU was led by senior Paul Guardado, who hit .500 in two games, with three hits. Sophomore Eric Swann went 1-1 in one game and junior Ethan Gold hit .667 in out outing, with two hits. Senior Justin Gibson led the team with two RBIs.
Junior Robert Buitrago allowed eight hits and four runs in seven innings of work in game one, while striking out six batters. Senior Gabriel Martinez suffered the loss in game two, throwing a complete game and allowing eight hits, five runs and earning four strikeouts.
The teams will resume the three-game series, Saturday, March 23 with a single game slated to start at 1 p.m.
Game 1 – SNU 4, ECU 2
The Tigers were the first to get on the scoreboard in the top of the second. Junior Chris Lane hit a single to center field and was advanced on a sacrifice bunt by senior Andrew Olson. Lane advanced to third on a balk, putting him in scoring position when Gibson hit a double down the right field line.
The Crimson Storm countered with two runs in the bottom of the second for a 1-2 advantage.
ECU tied the game at two in the top of the fourth. Lane reached on an error and was advanced to third in a sacrifice bunt by Olson and a 6-3 put-out by senior Sam Malchar. Gibson added a second RBI to his totals with a triple down the right field line for the 2-2 score.
After holding SNU in the bottom of the fourth, the Tigers allowed the Crimson Storm to score a run in the fifth and eighth innings for the 2-4 final.
Game 2 – SNU 5, ECU 1
SNU started the scoring in the bottom of the first inning with a single run.
ECU tied the game at one in the top of the second. Junior Josh Lavender doubled down the left field line and was sent to third on a failed pickoff attempt. That set up Malchar for an RBI with his single to left field.
The teams battled through the tie for the next two innings before the Crimson Storm added two runs in both the fourth and fifth innings for the 1-5 final.