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Ouachita Baptist sweeps doubleheader from Missouri Western


ARKADELPHIA – It was a ceremonial day Saturday at Rab Rogers Field as the 2008 Division II National Runner-up team was recognized before the game as the ninth-ranked Ouachita Baptist University baseball team swept a doubleheader over Missouri Western State, 7-6 and 65.

The second pitch from the mound in the opening game set Missouri Western (0-2) up with the lead as Troy Landi homered over the left-center wall. Then in the top of the second Billy Waldman hit a two run home run over the same spot to give the Griffons a 3-0 lead.

Brock Green, who went 3-for-5 with three RBIs, got things going in the bottom of the second with a single to left-center, bringing in Drew Maus to cut Missouri Western’s lead to 3-1. Things were looking good for the Tigers when the bases were loaded with two outs, but they were unable to capitalize on the opportunity.

A double from Andrew Elmendorf gave the Griffons a 6-2 lead in the top of the fifth inning. But a two-run shot from Rudy Jovanovski, who went 2-for-5 with a pair of RBIs, cut the Griffons’ lead to 6-4.

The Griffons loaded the bases in the tip of the sixth with one out, but the Ouachita defense stepped up and didn’t allow a run.

In the top of the seventh Missouri Western threatened again with runners on the corners and only one out, but the Tigers (4-1) turned a double play to end the inning and escape unscratched.

Will Gowdy was hit by pitch to start the bottom of the ninth. Two batters later, Maus was hit by pitch. A dropped fly ball from the right fielder loaded the bases for the Tigers with one out. Another error, this time by the first baseman, brought in a run and left the bases loaded. And a single down the left-field line by Brock Green brought in Maus and Luke Hardcastle to give the Tigers the thrilling come-from-behind victory.

Sean O’Rourke (1-0) earned the win for the Tigers, pitching four innings and allowing two hits and no runs. Chase Baran started the game and pitched five innings allowing six runs while striking out six.

For the Griffons Andy Hebrard (0-1) took the loss allowing three runs on 24 pitches. Also pitching for the Griffons were Ryan Carbah, Wes Winn, Dillon Griffin and Blake Thomas.

In the second game, the Tigers got off to a great start in the first inning by scoring three runs.

Maus hit a sacrifice fly to left to bring in JoeDan Poulter. Gowdy scored off of a balk by pitcher Chris Sundvold, and Green doubled to left-center to score Jovanovski.

Missouri Western answered with four runs in the top of the third. In the frame, they scored off of an error by Hardcastle, the Tigers’ catcher, and three hits.

The Tigers went ahead again in the bottom of the fourth with a double from Poulter bringing in Drew Werzelbacher and Blake Lockwood.

In the bottom of the sixth inning, Gowdy hit a sac fly to plate Werzelbacher for a 6-4 lead.

As the field almost became too dark to play on the Griffons scored one more run, but it was not enough to top the Tigers.

Ouachita returns to action with a noon doubleheader at Rab Rodgers Field against Missouri Western. The Tigers will play a seven-inning game, concluding with a nine-inning contest. Both games can be heard on the Ouachita Baptist University Athletic Web site at:

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