Feb. 17, 2007
The Northwest Yard Dog's Split with Arkansas TechRUSSELLVILLE, Ark. - (Game One) (Game Two) The Northwest Missouri State baseball team split a doubleheader against the Wonder Boys of Arkansas Tech winning the first game 11-6 in eight innings and losing the nightcap 3-1.
Northwest moves to 2-1 overall after today's action, while Arkansas Tech post's a 2-7-1 overall record.
In the first game, Northwest scored four runs to tie the game in the top of the seventh, 6-6. Junior transfer Stevie Bush started the rally with a leadoff bunt and sparked the next three Northwest players to reach base. Senior shortstop John White evened up the score on a RBI single. The Bearcats had the bases loaded, with just one out, and a chance to take the lead but a failed squeeze play turned into a double-play.
A five run eighth sealed a Bearcat comeback. Sophomore outfielder Chris Benham, a transfer from Southern University, drove in senior catcher Ryley Westman for the first run of the eighth and two Tech errors, the only of the contest for either team, contributed to the remaining four unearned Bearcat runs.
Tech exploded in the third knocking starter senior Brian Lamers out after just 2.2 innings of work. Back-to-back RBI singles followed by back-to-back RBI doubles plated five Wonder Boy runs, which gave them an early 5-1 lead. Tech held a 6-2 lead into the top of the seventh before the Bearcat's comeback.
Senior reliever Brett Whittle picked up the win pitching the last 1.2 innings. True freshman Tyler Ryals took the loss for the Wonder Boys giving up five runs, only one earned, in 1.2 innings.
White led all hitters in game one with a 4-for-5 performance, two runs scored and two RBI. Two other Northwest players had a multi-hit game in sophomore third-baseman Ben Malick (3-for-5) and Benham (2-for-4).
Head coach Darin Loe said, "As a whole right now, we are doing a good job of taking advantage of other team's mistakes, but we still need to create more scoring opportunities." Northwest took advantage of Tech's errors in game one, but the Wonder Boy's played better defense in game two not allowing the Bearcats any easy runs.
Game two was all Tech's junior right-hander Cody Taylor. He pitched a complete game allowing just four hits and striking out five in the win. Junior Joel Epley, a transfer from St. Louis Community College at Meramec, got the loss in four innings of work. Senior Evan Nickell finished the last two innings.
Junior outfielder Drew DeMott, a Maryville native, drove in the only Northwest run on a double in the fourth inning scoring sophomore Bill Disselhoff. The Wonder Boy's took the lead in the bottom half of the fourth, 2-1, on an RBI infield single by sophomore outfielder Chase Edler. Tech added an insurance run in the fifth on a RBI double by David Gaines.
"We ran into a good pitcher tonight and did not create very many scoring opportunities," coach Loe said of Taylor's command on the mound.
The Bearcats did have the tying runs on base in the seventh with one out and the top of the order up, but could not replicate game ones comeback as junior Jake Bradshaw flew out to center and junior Todd Schonhoff grounded out to the first baseman to give Arkansas Tech its 1,000 victory in its history.
"We took a break between the games and did not pitch well, play defense well or pitch well," coach Loe commented about the 3-1 loss in the nightcap.
The Bearcats will finish the series with Arkansas Tech tomorrow at 1 p.m. with one nine inning game. Sophomore transfer right-hander Danny Malone is scheduled to take the hill.
Tomorrows game is available through webcast on the Bearcat baseball homepage.
NOTES: The win in game two was the 1,000 in school history for Arkansas Tech … The last time the Bearcats won the first two games of the season was 1996 … Bradshaw, Benham and Westman, R. each have three-game hitting streaks … Britt Westman has started 110 straight games … Northwest is now 3-2 all-time versus Arkansas Tech.
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