The combination of power and pitching were key for the ORU baseball team as they defeated North Dakota State 10-3, Friday night.
The 7-8-9 spots in the lineup were the story Friday as the bottom of the lineup carried the load offensively for the Golden Eagles. The combination of Brent Williams, Trevin Sonnier and Chase Stafford went a combined 9 for 15 with three doubles and seven RBI.
“We’ve lost the last two Fridays and so it was really important for us to come out and get a win on our home field tonight,” said Sonnier. “We can still get better, but tonight was big time for sure.”
Sonnier got the Golden Eagles on the board in the second inning with a two-run homer to left to give ORU an early 2-0 lead. Williams added a towering two-run home run in the fourth inning.
“We’re getting close. You can see it in spurts. The bottom of our lineup was really good,” said ORU Head Baseball Coach Ryan Folmar. “When you add depth to your lineup, you have a chance to really do some damage.”
Sophomore starter Bryce Howe pitched well for ORU, not allowing a hit until the fifth inning. Howe dominated Bison hitters in his seven innings of work with his fastball and his off-speed pitches. He struck out seven hitters while walking one.
“[He] probably had his breaking ball of the season tonight. He was throwing both the slider and the curveball for strikes. When he’s doing that, he has the chance to knock down a lot of innings,” said Folmar. “He continues to get better.”
Freshman starter Taylor Varnell will miss his second consecutive start this weekend due to injury. Folmar says the decision in Varnell is just a precaution and he expects Varnel to be ready by next weekend.
The next game for the Golden Eagles will be tomorrow afternoon when the Golden Eagles take on NDSU in Game 2 of the three-game series. Redshirt senior Nick Wood is expected to start for ORU. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. at J.L. Johnson Stadium.