ADA - The East Central University baseball team earned victories in the first two games of the Great American Conference series with Southern Nazarene at Ken Turner Field. The Tigers (13-21, 12-11 GAC) opened the day with a 6-5 victory in 12 innings and then a 14-3 win in the seven inning game.
ECU was led by senior Kris Molter, with a .600 batting average, six hits, three runs and two RBIs. Junior Kodiak O'Ravez added five hits, five runs and a .556 average.
Senior Dylan Sanchez picked up the win in the opening game, throwing the final 5.1 innings, allowing seven hits and two runs and striking out five. Sophomore Brandon Dusenberry started the game and earned five Ks.
Sophomore Shae Edmonds threw a complete game two, earning the win on 12 hits, three runs and two strikeouts.
The teams will wrap up the series with a single nine-inning game, Saturday, April 9 at noon at Ken Turner Field.
East Central 6, Southern Nazarene 5 (12)
The Crimson Storm (7-29, 5-18 GAC) got out to a quick start in the opening game of the series, taking a 0-2 advantage after the first inning.
The Tigers took until the fourth to get things going, cutting the deficit in half for a 1-2 score. O'Ravez, Molter and junior Jake MeKeel all singled to load the bases, which allowed junior Kaleb Matthews to earn an RBI with a sacrifice fly to center.
SNU added a run in the seventh for a 1-3 advantage, but ECU came right back and took a 4-3 lead in the bottom of the inning.
Matthews started things with a single and was sent home when junior Trevor Huie hit a triple that bounced off the right field fence. Junior Trey Mound earned a RBI with a single up the middle before the first out was recorded. Sophomore Dalton Etheredge kept the inning alive by drawing a walk and the two ended up on second and third on a double steal. That allowed sophomore Austin LoBue to get a RBI with a sacrifice fly to right.
Things got going again in the top of the ninth, as the Crimson Storm regained the lead with two runs (4-5).
However, the Tiger would not go quietly and tied the game in the bottom of the ninth due to an error and a double from LoBue.
The teams would then battle through three more innings before a winner could be determined. In the bottom of the 12th, O'Ravez got ECU going with a single and was followed on base with a single from Molter. MeKeel flew out to right to put the runners on first and third, which allowed Matthews to earn the game-winning hit and RBI with a single up the middle.
East Central 14, Southern Nazarene 3
SNU was again the first to score in the second game of the day, earning a run in the first two innings for a 0-2 advantage.
The Tigers cut the deficit in half in the second, earning a run on a triple from junior Trey Mound and a single from Etheredge.
ECU then tied the game in the third. O'Ravez was walked, Molter singled and Matthews was walked to load the bases. Mound then earned the RBI when he drew a walk.
The Crimson Storm regained the lead in the fourth inning, 2-3, with a single run. However, the Tigers countered with a run in the bottom of the fourth to take the lead for good.
After two outs, O'Ravez and Molter hit back-to-back doubles for the first run and MeKeel sent the second run across the plate with a single to left.
ECU added a run in the fifth on a walk and a double that hit off the top of the left field fence by sophomore Austin LoBue for a 5-3 score.
The sixth is when the Tigers did their real damage, sending nine runs across the plate. The inning saw ECU get walked four times and hit by a pitch once. The Tigers also hit four singles and saw a three-run home run from sophomore Jacob Cowling for the 14-3 score.
SNU tried to cut the deficit in the seventh, getting two base runners, but ECU held strong for the 14-3 victory.