Tiger baseball scores 27 runs in split at Southwest Baptist
FHSU Sports Information
Fort Hays State baseball gained a split in the final two games of a four-game series at Southwest Baptist on Saturday in Bolivar, Mo. The Tigers made a thrilling comeback in the final inning of game one, but came up a run short in a 16-15 loss, but bounced back behind a strong outing from Joe Mapes for a 12-5 win in game two. The Tigers are now 13-24 overall and 11-21 in the MIAA. SBU moved to 22-18 overall and 18-13 in the MIAA.
Game 1: Southwest Baptist 16, Fort Hays State 15
Fort Hays State needed seven runs to tie in the seventh inning and came up with six, falling to Southwest Baptist by one run in the first game Saturday. A Jordan Miller three-run homer with two outs pulled the Tigers within one, but SBU’s Spencer Andrews got a groundout to follow ending the game and a huge rally.
The Tigers took a 2-0 lead initially in the first inning on a two-RBI single by Cooper Langley, but the Bearcats responded with three in the bottom of the first powered by two home runs to take a 3-2 lead. FHSU tied the game with a run in the second on a Clayton Garland RBI single, but SBU scored three more in the bottom half of the inning to make it 6-3.
Fort Hays State took its second lead of the game at 7-6 with four runs in the third. James Denton and Nick Hammeke each had RBI singles, Gus Strunk added a sacrifice fly RBI, and Garland had a RBI double. The lead was short lived once again as SBU scored a run in the bottom of the inning to tie the game 7-7.
A solo home run by Langley put the Tigers in front for the third time in the game in the fourth, but SBU responded with a two-out, two-run homer in the bottom of the inning to grab the lead back at 9-8.
The Tigers were held without a run in the fifth, the only time in the game a team failed to score in an inning. SBU then tacked on four in the bottom half of the inning to extend its lead to 13-8. FHSU starter Austin Unrein was finally lifted on the mound in the inning, allowing 12 runs on 15 hits with three walks and two strikeouts. He would take the loss, moving to 3-2. Drew Martineau could not get an out against the two batters he faced, yielding a run on two hits. Nathan Briar finally stopped the rally inducing a ground-ball double play to the second batter he faced.
Hammeke had a RBI single in the sixth for the only run of the inning for FHSU and SBU tacked on three more in the bottom half to make it 16-9 going into the seventh. SBU rallied for the three runs on two outs with a two-run homer and RBI single. All runs were charged to Briar, who finished with three runs allowed on four hits and a walk.
Garland sparked the final-inning rally for the Tigers with a triple to lead off the seventh. Horace Johnson followed with a RBI double. Langley notched his fourth RBI of the game with another double, making it 16-11. With two outs, Denton had a RBI double to make it 16-12, then Hammeke walked, setting up the three-run home run by Jordan Miller to pull the Tigers within one. Gus Strunk worked a full count in his at bat following, but grounded out to third to end the game.
The Bearcats used six pitchers in the game with their fourth, Matt Dye, getting the win. He pitched 2.1 innings of relief and allowed just one run, moving to 2-0 on the season. Even though he surrendered the home run to Miller in the seventh, Spencer Andrews recorded his second save of the season securing the final out for SBU.
Game 2: Fort Hays State 12, Southwest Baptist 5
Fort Hays State jumped out to a 5-0 lead before SBU finally got on the board in the fourth with a pair of runs. The Tigers never trailed in a game they methodically went on to win 12-5 behind a solid pitching performance from starter Joe Mapes.
Fort Hays State scored two in an inning five times in the nine-inning contest and posted single runs in the third and eighth innings. The only innings the Tigers went scoreless were the fourth and seventh.
Clayton Garland, Horance Johnson and Kodie Fewin all had two RBI in the game. Garland, now hitting .430 on the season, went 3-for-4 at the dish with two singles and a triple. He had RBIs on the triple and a sacrifice fly. Johnson picked up a RBI on a sacrifice bunt in the first inning and had a RBI single later. Fewin had a two-run home run in the ninth and scored three runs in the game.
Casey Sedbrook had a 3-for-5 game and scored three runs, while Gus Strunk went 2-for-4 and scored twice.
Mapes went through eight batters without allowing a hit to start the game, keeping the Bearcats off the board for three innings. After allowing two in the fourth and one in the fifth, he settled back in to hold the Bearcats scoreless in the sixth and seventh thanks to ground-ball double plays. Mapes got the Bearcats to hit into a total of three double plays in his outing.
Mapes retired the first two batters he faced in the eighth before running into trouble by hitting a batter and allowing two singles. He turned the ball over to Gabe Cook who got the final out of the eighth. Cook allowed one run in the ninth.
Mapes moved to 2-4 on the season by going 7.2 innings. He allowed four runs on eight hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
Cole Roark took the loss for SBU, going 5.0 innings. He allowed nine runs (six earned) on eight hits and three walks with three strikeouts.