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Greyhounds End Losing Streak with 15-Hit Attack in 18-10 Victory over Central Oklahoma
Bronchos Gain Split with 9-7 Win in Second Game

Box Score - Game 3 - ENMU 18, UCO 10
Box Score - Game 4 - UCO 9, ENMU 7

EDMOND, OKLA. — The Eastern New Mexico University baseball team pounded out 15 hits, and took advantage of six walks and seven hit batsmen, to explode out of a 10-game losing streak with an 18-10 victory over the University of Central Oklahoma, in the first game of a Lone Star Conference crossover double-header, Sunday, Mar. 26 at Broncho Field. UCO struck back in the second game, as the Bronchos earned a 9-7 win. ENMU stayed above the .500-mark with a 17-15 overall record, while UCO ended the day at 17-11.

ENMU tied a school record with the seven hit batsmen in the first game. Seven Eastern players also were hit by pitches on Mar. 17, 1992, against Wisconsin-Eau Claire and on Feb. 26, 1993, against New Mexico Highlands. Brian Green (Sr., C, Fountain Hills, AZ/Central Arizona College) was hit three times in the win over UCO.

In the opener, Kelton Hayes (Jr., DH, Guthrie, OK/Northlake CC) batted in the clean-up spot for the first time this season. He responded by cranking out two home runs and smacking two doubles. He was 4 for 5 at the plate with three runs and three RBIs.

Hayes’ first double started Eastern’s eight-run second inning. Later in the same stanza, he belted a two-run homer to center field. He provided a lead-off homer in the sixth and opened the seventh with his second double.

During the second game, Hayes was 2 for 3 with a double and a run scored. He was 6 for 8 on the day with five extra-base hits, four RBIs and four runs scored.

Eastern led 8-0 following the second inning in the opener. After UCO plated one run in the bottom of the inning on a solo homer by Brandon Bacon, the Hounds added four runs in the third inning for a 12-1 advantage.

Matt Hinojosa (Sr.., SS, Baytown, TX/Laredo CC) drove in two runs in the third with a single up the middle. The remaining runs scored on a double by Mike McDuffie (Jr., 2B, Albuquerque, NM/Sandia HS).

UCO scored single runs in the third and fifth stanzas, but Eastern put three runs in the sixth and seventh, as the lead increased to 18-3. Even so, the Hounds had to hold off the Bronchos, who scored seven times in the seventh.

Bacon led off the bottom of the seventh with a homer and brought in two more runs with a double after UCO batted around. Reliever Evan Orsak (Fr., RHP, Andrews, TX/Andrews HS) entered the game to face the fourth batter of the inning. He eventually forced three outs, with Jason Bicknell striking out to end the game. Starter Evan Courteau (Jr., RHP, Minneapolis, MN/Rochester Community and Technical College) improved to 4-3, but gave up six runs, five earned.

UCO scored two runs in each of the first two innings to claim a 4-0 lead in the nightcap. The lead increased to 5-0, before Eastern scored three times in the fifth. In the bottom of the fifth, the Bronchos added four runs, with two scoring on a triple by Miguel Moctezuma.

Moctezuma was 3 for 3 with three runs scored. In addition to his triple, he singled and stole home in the first, walked in the second, and doubled and scored in the fourth.

Hayes moved to the fifth spot in Eastern’s batting order in the second game, as Justin Gee (Sr., RF, Clovis, NM/Clovis HS) returned to the clean-up position. Gee, who did not play in the first game, went 2 for 4 with a single in the fifth and a grand slam in the sixth.

Gilbert Alvarado (Sr., LF, Roswell, NM/New Mexico State University) and Hinojosa were hit by pitches with one out in the sixth. McDuffie loaded the bases with an infield single, then Gee drove the ball over the left field fence. It was his second grand slam of the season. He hit the first slam as the fourth batter of the year, helping ENMU open the season with an 8-6 win at Sul Ross State University (Feb. 3).

Gee’s grand slam pulled the Greyhounds within 9-7, but Eastern hit into two quick outs to end the sixth, then sent just three batters to the plate in the seventh.

Nathan Nance, who started for UCO, pitched four innings and improved to 3-2 with the win. Cameron Karner earned a save. Charlie Ward (So., RHP, Roswell, NM/Trinidad State JC), in his first start, fell to 5-1 for ENMU, after allowing four runs (two earned) in two innings.

ENMU will be on the road on Tuesday, Mar. 28 and Wednesday, Mar. 29. On Tuesday, the Hounds will play a nine-inning game at New Mexico Highlands University at 2 p.m. MST. On Wednesday, Eastern will play a nine-inning game at Colorado Christian University at 3 p.m. MST.