Score: Oral Roberts 4 – Little Rock 3
Records: ORU (2-0) – LR (0-2)
Location: Tulsa, Okla. (J.L. Johnson Stadium)
TULSA, Okla. – In walk-off fashion, Michael Hungate sent Oral Roberts baseball fans home happy hitting a solo home run in the bottom of the 13th inning to cap a remarkable, 4-3, comeback victory over Little Rock Saturday afternoon at J.L. Johnson Stadium.
The Golden Eagles needed two runs in the bottom of the ninth, after a Trojan three-run home run in the eighth, just to reach extra innings. ORU had chances to put the game away, but stranded the bases loaded in both the 10th and 12th totaling 11 runners left on base for the game. Hungate came through with his first home run of the season sealing the series win for ORU.
The pitching staff was on display again combining for 11 strikeouts in 13 innings led by starter Josh McMinn. The sophomore threw 6.1 innings giving up four hits with six strikeouts before giving way to junior transfer Ryan McCollough, who made his ORU debut. Kyler Stout pitched the final two innings to get the win on the mound holding the Trojans without a baserunner leading to the dramatic homer.
Quote of the Game
"We faced a big moment there, a three-run homer late in the ballgame, and you overcome that to tie it and send it to extra innings. I was proud of the way our guys responded in another difficult spot. I think the bottom line is we have to play a little better than we did today. We have to execute a lot better offensively than we did today, so we have a lot of things to work on." – Head Coach Ryan Folmar
ORU saw momentum swing in its favor late in the ballgame to overcome a three-run home run by Little Rock's Dalton Thomas in the eighth inning off closer Brady Womacks. Nick Roark and Matt Whatley led the bottom of the ninth with walks and moved into scoring position on a sac bunt from Noah Cummings. Brent Williams lofted a sac fly into center to cut the margin to one before Hungate ripped a single into right center plating Whatley from second evening the score, 3-3.
Inside the Box Score
- Kyler Stout earned his first win since March 15, 2015 after missing significant time with injuries during his career. The redshirt junior threw two scoreless innings without allowing a hit and added two strikeouts.
- Roark doubled in the fourth and scored the opening run of the contest on a single off the bat of Noah Cummings giving ORU a lead that lasted into the eighth.
- Nick Rotola paced the Golden Eagles offensively with three hits, all singles, and stole his first base of 2017. Hungate was the only other player to record a multi-hit performance.
- Brady Womacks matched a career high throwing 3.2 innings from the bullpen scattering four hits with two strikeouts.
- For the second time in as many games, catcher Matt Whatley threw out one of two potential base stealers.
- ORU was out-hit for the second straight game as Little Rock posted nine to the eight for the Golden Eagles.
- Whatley and Dylan Snypes combined for four of the team's seven walks, all of which came in the eighth inning or later.
- Little Rock pitchers Cory Malcom and Dylan Slayton each set career highs in strikeouts as the eight visiting pitchers combined for 17 punch outs.
- The Golden Eagles debuted their new head-to-toe navy blue uniforms with navy hats and a gold bill.
The Golden Eagles go for the sweep and close their opening series Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. against the Trojans at J.L. Johnson Stadium. Catch all the action with live video and stats available at www.oruathletics.com.
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