RUSSELLVILLE, ARK. - The East Central University baseball team dropped two games at Arkansas Tech in Great American Conference action. The Tigers first fell 7-9 and then 0-3 in the seven-inning game of the series.
ECU was led by junior Riley Roberts, who hit .625 for the day with five hits and two runs scored. Junior Jake McKeel added a .429 average, with three hits, one run and one RBI.
Sophomore Kyle Britt threw a complete game in the final game of the day, allowing five hits and three runs and striking out two.
The Tigers will next be in action, March 25-26 at Ken Turner Field when they welcome Harding for a three-game series.
Arkansas Tech 9, East Central 7
ECU started the scoring in the top of the first inning, taking a 2-0 lead. Roberts led off with a single and was advanced to third when senior Kris Molter and McKeel were both walked to load the bases. That allowed junior Thomas McGarry to send two runs home with a single to left field.
The Wonder Boys (12-16, 6-9 GAC) cut the deficit in half with a run in the third inning, but the Tigers responded with a run in the fourth.
Junior Trevor Huie started things with a double to right and was sent to third on a sacrifice bunt by Roberts. Molter earned the RBI with a single through the right side for a 3-1 score.
ATU then took control of the game with three runs in the fourth for a 3-4 advantage.
The Wonder Boys added a run in both the fifth and sixth innings to increase their lead to 3-6.
ECU tried to fight back and got within one (5-6), with two runs in the seventh. Junior Kaleb Matthews started the inning when he was hit by a pitch and McKeel singled to left. Both runners were advanced on a sacrifice bunt by McGarry and then scored when junior JT Stevenson singled to center.
ATU responded with two runs of its own in the seventh to regain a 5-8 lead.
The Tigers again cut into the deficit with two runs in the eighth for a 7-8 score. Roberts singled and scored when Matthews hit a double down the right field line. The second run was scored when McKeel singled up the middle.
The Wonder Boys added a run in the bottom of the eighth for a 7-9 lead and then held ECU off the scoreboard in the ninth for the win.
ATU 3, East Central 0
The second game of the day was a low-scoring affair, with only three runs scored by ATU in the fourth inning.
The Tigers recorded four hits throughout the game and had just four base runners, with all coming in different innings.