Redhawks Fall to Colonels 3-2 in 11 innings
April 30, 2005
RICHMOND, Kent. - (Saturday, April 30, 2005) The Southeast Missouri baseball team had their three-game conference game winning streak snapped on Saturday, falling to Eastern Kentucky, 3-2, in 11 innings at Turkey Hughes Field. The Colonels second baseman Tony Wells opened the 11th with a leadoff double and came around to score the winning run on the next at-bat when Redhawks second baseman Bo Jenkins mishandled a grounder by Adam Visnic.
Wells run in the 11th gave Eastern (17-21, 8-7 Ohio Valley Conference) the victory in a game which featured inspired performances from both starting pitchers. Joey Evans went 8.0 frames for the Redhawks and threw seven-straight shutout innings after allowing two runs in the bottom of the first. EKU sophomore McKenzie Willoughby went a season-high 8.1 innings and allowed just six hits and two runs with five strikeouts.
Eastern jumped all over Evans in the first, as senior Derrick Bussell drew a leadoff walk and promptly took second with his first of two stolen bases on the day (bringing his league-leading total to 24). Senior Bryan Stevenson plated Bussell with a RBI triple to deep centerfield, then scored the team's second run off a base knock by Will Whisenant.
Willoughby held the Redhawks (16-24, 7-9 OVC) scoreless for the first four frames, but could not escape the fifth unharmed, as the Redhawks evened the game at 2-all. After retiring seven in-a-row, Willoughby issued a free pass to Chris Gibson. Jordan Payne followed with a two-out RBI single to make it a 2-1 contest before Eric Horstman tied the game with a run-scoring double.
With the game tied at 2-all, the starting pitchers matched zeroes for the next three innings before both left in the ninth. Willoughby gave way to senior Andy Polzin (2-1) in the ninth after throwing 120 pitches. Polzin took the mound with two runners on and one out, but worked his way out of the jam by fanning Gibson and getting Jenkins to pop up.
After walking Visnic to start off the ninth, Evans was pulled in favor of Jamie McCallister, having thrown 145 pitches. Eastern moved Visnic to third with a sacrifice bunt and a groundout, but McCallister managed to strikeout Bussell to end the threat.
Both teams headed into the 11th inning having missed on scoring opportunities in the 10th. The Redhawks had a runner on third with one out in the 10th, before Polzin buckled down and fanned the next two batters to preserve the 2-2 tie.
Polzin recorded a 1-2-3 inning in the 11th to set the stage for Wells' game-winning run in the bottom half. Polzin threw 2.2 scoreless innings with four strikeouts and just one hit allowed to close out the game and pick up his second victory of the year.
Horstman accounted for three of the Redhawk's six hits in the losing effort going 3-5 with an RBI double.
Horstman extended his hitting streak to 10-games
The two teams will close out their three-game series with two seven-inning games on Sunday, with the first one to begin at noon.