Late Inning Comeback Leads To Kentucky State Baseball Spliting Doubleheader With Miles

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Fairfield, Ala.—Kentucky State University baseball split a doubleheader with Miles College on Saturday afternoon.

The Thorobreds (13-24, 7-4) dropped the first game of the day 3-1 but rallied in the second game for a 5-4 victory over the SIAC West Division-leading Golden Bears (16-15, 7-1).

“Today was another fun day of baseball,” said Head Coach Henry. “We dropped a close game that could’ve gone either way and won with a two-run seventh after being down to our last strike. Josh Dunn was great on the mound in the first game, and Joe Crisp pitched his heart out for a win in game two.”

The rubber match of the three-game series is set for Sunday with a 1:00 pm ET first pitch.

Game 1: MC 3 KSU 1

Sophomore first baseman Artie Santomo launched his second home run of the season over the left field wall, giving KSU an early 1-0 advantage. The homer by Santomo was his first since Feb. 18 against Lake Erie, and it was his first RBI since Mar. 19. The Florence, Kentucky native finished the game going 1-for-3.

The lead didn’t last long as senior pitcher Josh Dunn gave up a two-run home run to designated hitter Brashear Reeves, handing the hosting Golden Bears a 2-1 upper hand. The long ball given up by Dunn was the first he let fly over the fence in nearly month. The last was on Mar. 19 against Paine College.

MC added another run in the second for a 3-1 score.

KSU was held scoreless for five straight innings and looked to end the streak in the seventh inning. Senior third baseman Brandon Story singled to lead off the inning after junior catcher Greg Alexander fouled out, and sophomore right fielder Jay Poullard singled to left field, putting runners at first and second with one outs. The Thorobreds failed to knock either runner in as sophomore designated hitter Cameron Starks and sophomore second baseman Russell Sims struck out to end the threat and the game at 3-1.

Dunn (5-4) pitched six innings for a complete game, giving up three earned runs on five hits, while striking out two. Dunn has now thrown a team-leading eight straight complete games for the Thorobreds.

Game 2: KSU 5 MC 4

KSU and MC battled in a teeter totter matchup in game two, as the Golden Bears took the early lead with a run the second inning. KSU followed up in third with a two-RBI single by Starks to gain a 2-1 lead. MC brought the game back to a tie with a sacrifice fly in the fourth, heading to the fifth at 2-2.

The sixth inning is where things got interesting as sophomore catcher Bryan Wilson lifted a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Simms from third, breaking the tie for a 3-2 KSU lead.

With sophomore pitcher Joe Crisp on the bump, MC managed to push two more runs across in the bottom half of the inning, retaking the lead at 4-3 heading into the seventh, eyeing a doubleheader sweep.  After a quick out, Story started the final frame like he did the game before with a single to center field. Alexander followed up this time with a double, advancing Story to third. Poullard grounded into a fielder’s choice, reaching first base as Story was thrown out at home for the second out of the inning.

The Golden Bear intentionally walked Starks to load the bases with Sims stepping into the batter’s box. Sims cracked a two-strike single to third scoring Alexander, a throwing error by third baseman Trevor Bates on the play allowed Poullard to score before Starks was called out at second, after the miscue.

KSU went into the bottom of the seventh with a 5-4 lead as Crisp slammed the door, only allowing one base runner for the victory.

The complete game by Crisp (3-2) was his third of the season and his consecutive second performance. Crisp allowed four earned over his seven innings of work, without allowing a walk, and striking out one.

Story led the offense as he went 3-for-4 with a run scored. Starks followed going 2-for-3, with two RBIs and a run scored.

“Our defense was excellent both games,” said Henry. “Especially Bryan Wilson behind the plate in game two and Matthew Oxford at shortstop in both games. These guys just don’t quit and I’m having a blast coaching them. They’ve consistently improved all season and I’m excited to see what’s in store the rest of the way.”

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