Gonzalez strikes out nine in snow at SEMO, ORU wins 3-1
CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. - Junior pitcher Alex Gonzalez struck out nine Southeast Missouri State batters as Oral Roberts tops the Redhawks on a snowing Saturday afternoon, 3-1.
The Golden Eagles improve their record to .500 at 4-4, while the Redhawks drop to 6-4 on the season. The two teams will play a pair of games on Sunday, with the first beginning at noon.
On Saturday, the game moved quickly through the first three innings. The Golden Eagles struck first in the top of the fourth on a two-run homerun over the left field wall off the bat of Tyler Boss. It was Boss' first home run as a Golden Eagle.
Scoring on the home run in front of Boss was Matt Brandy reached on a two-out single in the previous at bat.
In the bottom of the inning, the Redhawks threatened after Cole Bieser singled to lead the inning off, reaching third after a couple of Gonzalez wild pitches. However, Gonzalez settled down, striking out the side, giving him six K's through four innings.
Gonzalez struck out four in a row after the first out in the fifth, adding another to end the inning, giving him eight through the first five innings.
Leading off the top of the sixth, Logan Domenico picked up his first extra base hit of the season, doubling over the centerfielders head, moving to third on a SAC bunt from Graham McIntyre. Jose Trevino stepped in and a slapped an outside pitch to right field to drive in Domenico to extend the lead to 3-0.
With two outs and Trevino on third and Boss, who drew a walk, on second, the umpires send the two squads into their respective dugouts as the snow began to pick up. The game was delayed because the heavy snow and a white ball makes the situation potentially dangerous.
After about a ten minute delay, the players were called out on the field. As SEMO began taking warm-up pitches, the sun broke through for the first time of the afternoon.
The Redhawks added a run in the bottom of the sixth inning with a pair of hits by Bieser and Derek Gibson. With one out, Matt Tellor grounded out to first base, and the Golden Eagles conceded the run as Bieser scored to cut the ORU lead to 3-1.
Nate Garza came on in relief in the eighth inning, sitting down the Redhawks on just eight pitches. The sophomore eventually struck out the side in the bottom of the 9th, four total, to get the save.
ORU threatened to add some insurance in the top of the ninth as Chris Williams led the inning off with a walk and Cho moved him over on a single to right. Healy followed Cho with a SAC bunt, advancing both runners into scoring position. But that was all the damage that would be done in the inning, as both runners were left on base.
Brandy, Boss and Cho each reached safely with a pair of hits, as the Golden Eagles totaled nine in the ball game. Trevino and Goro each added singles on the cold afternoon to go along with Domenico's double.
ORU turned two double-plays in the contest.