Fort Hays State split a MIAA doubleheader with Truman on Saturday at Larks Park. The Tigers dropped game one 8-7, but bounced back for a 15-5 run-rule win in game two. Fort Hays State moved to 22-18 overall and 18-17 in the MIAA. FHSU moved up into eighth place in the MIAA standings with the split, a half game ahead of Southwest Baptist.
Game 1: Truman 8, Fort Hays State 7
Fort Hays State tied the seven-inning contest twice, but could not cash in on golden opportunities throughout the game to overtake Truman. After Truman took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first, FHSU responded with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning to tie the game. Truman picked up one in the third and one in the fourth, before FHSU pushed single runs across in the fourth and fifth to get the game tied once again.
Truman delivered the big blow in the sixth with four runs, but the Tigers responded with three in the bottom half of the inning taking advantage of two errors by the Bulldogs. However, the Tigers could not push the tying or go ahead runs across with the bases loaded when Jay Sanders grounded into an inning-ending double play. Sanders was 3-for-3 in the game up to that point.
The Tigers got a runner to second in the seventh inning with one out, but had a flyout and a strikeout to end the game.
Tayler Davis took the loss on the mound, moving to 6-3, allowing all eight runs on 11 hits and three walks with one strikeout in 5.2 innings of work. Kyle Leroy pitched the final 1.1 innings allowing a hit and a walk with one strikeout.
Kelton Rule had a team-high two RBI in the game for FHSU, one on a groundout and the other on a single. Sam Thornton, Ryan Busboom,m Nathan Miller and Jay Sanders all had an RBI. Horace Johnson went 3-for-3 at the plate in the game. Clayton Garland failed to get a hit, ending his 23-game hit streak.
Game 2: Fort Hays State 15, Truman 5 (7 inn.)
Game two had a similar feel early as both teams plated a pair of runs in the first inning. Truman took a 4-2 lead in the top of the fifth, but Fort Hays State finally took its first lead of the day at 7-4 with five runs in the bottom half of the fifth.
Truman pulled back within two with a run in the sixth, but the Tiger offense exploded for eight runs in the seventh to win the game by run-rule. An error by the Bulldogs in the seventh led to six unearned runs in the inning. Shane Wade delivered a game-winning walk-off single to cap the eight-run seventh.
Clayton Garland had four hits while Ryan Busboom and Horace Johnson both drove in three. Busboom had a two-RBI double in the eight-run inning and Johnson had a solo homer to trigger the eight-run seventh, then came up later in the inning to deliver a RBI double.
Alex Ellison was the winning pitcher for FHSU, going 6.0 innings with five runs allowed on seven hits with a walk and a strikeout. He is now 3-6 on the season. Michael Edlefson, who entered in the top of the seventh with the Tigers leading just 7-5, picked up a save by retiring the side in order in the seventh before the eight-run outburst by FHSU.
The Tigers look to take the rubber match of the three-game series on Sunday at 12 pm. Fort Hays State will have its 14 seniors recognized prior to the start of the game which can be heard on KAYS (1400-AM).
– FHSU Sports Information –
Fort Hays State is currently eighth in the MIAA standings and is battling for one of the eight MIAA Tournament spots with just three games remaining in the regular season. Following Sunday, FHSU goes to Northwest Missouri State to end the regular season with a doubleheader on Tuesday (Apr. 23).