The East Central University baseball team picked up the 7-3 win in the first game of a three-game series at Ouachita Baptist in Great American Conference action.
The Tigers (3-13, 3-4 GAC) were led by junior Kaleb Matthews, who tallied two hits, one run and three RBIs. Junior Trevor Huie added two hits, while ECU earned a total of nine for the game, including two home runs.
Sophomore Shae Edmonds came in for the final 2.1 innings and picked up the win on the mound, moving to 1-2 on the year. Edmonds allowed just one hit and struck out one. Sophomore Brandon Dusenberry started the game, allowing six hits and three runs in 6.2 innings, while striking out four.
The Tigers were the first to get on the scoreboard, taking a 1-0 lead after the second inning. Senior Kris Motler started the inning with a single through the left since, Matthews was walked and a passed ball put the runners on second and third. That allowed Molter to score when junior JT Stevenson grounded out to short.
ECU added a run in the fourth on a triple from junior Thomas McGarry and a two-out single from Matthews for a 2-0 lead.
Ouachita (4-11, 2-5 GAC) then took control of the fourth and fifth innings to take a 2-3 lead. OBU earned a run in the fourth and then two in the fifth.
Both teams then picked up the defense until the top of the eighth inning, with the Tigers regained the lead, 5-3. After the first out, McGarry was hit by a pitch and sent to second on a wild pitch. After the second out, junior Jake McKeel earned an RBI with a single. The final two runs of the innings were scored when Matthews hit a home run to right field.
ECU added to the lead in the top of the ninth inning to take a 7-3 lead. Junior Kodiak O'Ravez was walked and sent to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Casey Kenney. Junior Riley Roberts earned the RBIs with a home run to right.
In the bottom of the ninth, Ouachita saw the first batter sent back to the dugout, but the second reached due to an error. However, the next batter hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game with a 7-3 win for the Tigers.
The teams will wrap up the series, Saturday, March 5 with a double-header set to start at noon at Rab Rodgers Field.