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ORU Baseball looking to find answer for quiet bats as conference schedule continues

     The ORU baseball team has continued to impress to start the season going 11-6 in the month of March helped by an 8-1 record against Summit League opponents. While the Golden Eagles have managed to find ways to win in recent weeks, the team’s offense has gone cold forcing the team’s pitching staff to step up.

     The 1-5 spots in the lineup for ORU are scuffling lately as Dylan Snypes, Nick Roark, Matt Whatley, Noah Cummings, and Brent Williams have hit a combined .176 (16-91) over the last five games.

     “We got to get after it, get back in the cage and figure some things out. The guys we’re counting on have been scuffling and for us to get where we want to go, those guys have got to be good, that’s just the way it is,” said Head Coach Ryan Folmar. “You can call it pressure, but for us to be good at the end, we need to get those guys going to make this a complete offense.”

     While the top of the lineup has struggled, the Golden Eagles to get production elsewhere. The 6-9 spots in the lineup have helped pick up the slack coming up with big hits in big moments this season. The emergence of Trevor McCutchin has also helped carry the load. McCutchin is tied for second on the team with five home runs.

     “Luckily, we’ve had some guys at the bottom of the order produce and get [the lineup] turned over,” said Folmar. “Sam, Mike, and Cal have all had great moments and have given us some opportunities. Those guys at the top have produced before, so our expectation is for them to produce. We just hope it’s sooner rather than later.”

     Despite struggling at the plate, ORU has gotten solid pitching from the starting rotation and out of the bullpen. Golden Eagle starters have gone 2-1 in their previous five starts. Senior Logan Michaels has made a big impact as the team’s mid-week starter going 3-1 with a 2.50 ERA since returning from his injury on Feb. 28.

     “We want to build off each other with each other every night. If I were to go seven innings and give up one run today, I would want Josh [McMinn] to go complete game shutout tomorrow,” said starter Jusin McGregor. “It’s a friendly competition we like to have with each other.”

     The Golden Eagles will travel to Fort Wayne to take on IPFW this weekend before returning home next Tuesday to take on No. 9 Oklahoma. The Sooners defeated ORU 6-2 in Norman on Tuesday, April 4.