ADA - The East Central University baseball team earned its first Great American Conference sweep of the 2016 season, with a 9-4 victory over Southern Nazarene at Ken Turner Field.
The Tigers (14-21, 13-11 GAC) tallied 11 hits in the game, including two home runs. Senior Kris Molter and junior Trevor Huie led the group with three hits each. Molter added two RBIs and a run, while Huie tallied three RBIs and scored once.
Sophomore Kyle Britt earned the win on the mound, throwing the first eight innings of the game. He allowed six hits and four runs and struck out four. Junior Jake Wellington finished the game for ECU, allowing one hit and no runs.
The Crimson Storm (7-30, 5-19 GAC) started the scoring, getting two unearned runs in the top of the first inning for the 0-2 lead.
ECU cut the disadvantage in half in the bottom of the inning. After the first out, Molter doubled down the left field line and was advanced to third when junior Jake MeKeel grounded out to the shortstop. The run was scored on a single up the middle from junior Kaleb Matthews.
SNU added two runs in the top of the second to take a 1-4 lead before the Tigers responded in the third.
Junior Kodiak O'Ravez started the inning with a single up the middle and stole second. After the first two outs, Matthews was added to the base path by drawing a walk, allowing Huie to earn three RBIs with a home run to left field. Junior Trey Mound made it back-to-back home runs to left for ECU and gave the Tigers the 5-4 lead.
ECU added to the advantage in the sixth, scoring two runs on a single from junior JT Stevenson, triple from sophomore Dalton Etheredge and a sacrifice fly by sophomore Austin LoBue for the 7-4 score.
The Tigers added to more insurance runs in the eighth inning to lead 9-4. The inning started with a strikeout of Etheredge, but a passed ball allowed him to reach first. LoBue followed with a walk and both runners were advanced on a sacrifice bunt from O'Ravez. That allowed two runs to score when Molter hit a hard shot to short.
SNU garnered one hit in the top of the ninth, but the next three batters were sent back to the dugout to end the game with a 9-4 ECU victory.
The Tigers will now get ready for the next GAC challenge, a three-game series at Arkansas-Monticello, April 15-16 in Monticello, Ark.