The ORU baseball team was able to hold on late lead as they defeated UALR 3-2 in Game 1 of their doubleheader Saturday afternoon.
UALR had a chance to tie the game late after trailing for a majority of the game. The Trojans were able to get on the board against ORU reliever Grant Glaze. Glaze surrendered three singles in the eighth inning allowing UALR to score their first run. The Trojans would get a second run in the inning, but were unable to push across the tying run.
The Golden Eagles got on the board in the second inning as third baseman Chase Stafford walked with the bases loaded to drive in to give ORU an early 1-0 lead. ORU got two more runs off an RBI- double by Michael Hungate and an RBI-single by catcher Matt Whatley. This would be all the scoring they would need.
ORU had a balanced hitting attack on Saturday afternoon. Second baseman Nick Roark went 2 for 5 with a run scored and Hungate finished the day going 1 for 3 with a double, an RBI and a run scored.
Redshirt senior pitcher Nick Wood earned his first victory of 2016 Saturday afternoon. Wood pitched five shutout innings allowing no runs on just five hits. He struck out three batters and also walked three.
Golden Eagles couldn’t complete the comeback as UALR held on in the ninth to defeat ORU 9-8 in Game 2. ORU had the potential tying and game-winning run at first base, but couldn’t get the clutch hit to drive it in.
The Trojans got things going fast against starter Logan Michaels. Trojans scored three runs in the first inning as Michaels struggled to find his control. Michaels walked in the first run of the game with the bases loaded to give UALR a quick 1-0 lead. Trojans third baseman Ty Gunter followed with a two-run double to make it a 3-0 game.
ORU pitchers did not have any luck against UALR in Game 2. The combination of Michaels, Korbin Polly, Jake Morrison did little to slow UALR. The trio finished the game allowing nine runs (six earned runs) on 10 hits. The Golden Eagles also didn’t help themselves on defense committing two errors.
“It was good to see Logan keep his composure. He had a rough first inning, but settled in, knocked down six innings and really gave us a chance,”said ORU Head Baseball Coach Ryan Folmar. “It’s gonna come down to our bullpen. We gotta figure some things out and when we do we’re going to be pretty good.
The Golden Eagles swung the bat well given the misfortune they had in the first few innings. The team did manage to fight back and score six runs in the final three innings.
“We knew it was gonna come eventually. I though we swung the bat well early in the game, but just hitting it right at guys,” said Folmar. “We’re never gonna fold. We got down seven, but we never felt like we were out of the game.”
The next game for the Golden Eagles will be Sunday afternoon when they take on UALR in the series finale. Sophomore Taylor Varnell will get the start for ORU. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. at J.L. Johnson Stadium.