A six-run fifth inning highlighted by four doubles enabled the Hornets to come from behind to defeat the Bulldogs 6-4 in the series finale. ESU got stellar relief work from their bullpen as Matt Hinkley and Keith Picht shutdown the Bulldogs over seven and a third innings and fanned 11.
The Bulldogs got on the scoreboard early using a big defensive play by Blake Marino in the top of the first to grab the momentum. With runners in scoring position for the Hornets, Zack Carlson flared a foul pop down the left field line when Marino raced from his position at third and caught the ball over his shoulder and fired a strike home keeping the runs put. Logan Siegler then got David Richards to fly out to end the threat.
Zak Larkin led off for Truman with a triple down the right field line and scored as he slid under the tag on a play at the plate off the bat of Corbin Williams. The speedy Williams stole second, was sacrificed to third and added the second run of the inning on a ground out by Joe Emery.
The Bulldogs added two more in the second to chase starter Garrett Bane. T.J. Wood singled and was sacrificed over for Jordan Howeâ??s first of two doubles on the day. Howe would get to third on a wild pitch and score on Larkinâ??s ground out for a 4-0 lead.
It stayed that way until the fifth. A double by Jordan Slade opened the frame. Eric Dawson was hit by a pitch and Carlson singled in Slade for the first run. Aaron Rea doubled in one more but Marino made a nifty play in the next at bat as he snared David Richardsâ?? sharp grounder at third and tagged out Carlson scrambling back to the bag for the second out.
However consecutive doubles by Luke Slagle and Andrew Blackwell chased Siegler from the game and catcher Todd Schultz greeted Tyler Spencer with a two-strike single to drive in the sixth run of the inning.
Trumanâ??s five relievers did not allow a run the rest of the game but were one-upped by the Emporia staff. Hinkley was chased in the sixth after Jordan Hahn doubled with one out and Wood singled to make it first and third. However Picht got pinch hitter Andrew Range on the strike out, throw out double play to end the inning.
Picht worked around Howeâ??s leadoff double in the seven with a pair of Ks and struck out three more in the final two innings as he retired the final nine hitters faced for the save.
Courtesy: Truman State University