OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – McMurry University split a doubleheader with regional No. 7-ranked Oklahoma Christian University, losing the opener 4-2 and taking the nightcap, 4-2, at Dobson Field. The teams will play the rubber game of the Heartland Conference series on Saturday at 1 p.m. at OC.
In Game One, McM struck in its opening a-bat, after Christian Simmons laced a one out single and came home on AJ Dupre’s double down the leftfield line. In the bottom of the second, the Eagles (18-8, 11-6 HC) got to McM starter Joel DePorte (3-4) for four earned runs, sending eight batters to the plate and took the 4-1 lead.
DePorte would settle down and finish the game without allowing another run. DePorte struck out four and walked one, permitting nine hits.
But the damage was done. The War Hawks were able to scratch out another run in the top of the sixth on Eric Moritz’s RBI single that drove in Ben Douglas, who had reached with a one-out double in the previous at-bat. That made it 4-2, but McM could get no closer in the seven-inning bout.
McMurry matched OC with nine hits, led by Kyle Sargent, Dupre and Douglas who each went 2-for-4 in the game.
In Game Two, McM starter Caleb Gonzales gave up two unearned runs in the bottom of the second innings, as the host Eagles broke on top, 2-0. But the War Hawks answered back in the top of the third.
With one out, Greg Koll singled to left and, with Sargent at the plate, stole second. Sargent promptly slapped a single to center that moved Koll over to third. Simmons knocked McM’s third-consecutive hit of the frame, scoring Koll and moving Sargent to third. Hagan followed with a sacrifice fly to knot the game at 2-2.
The Eagles scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the fifth that made it 3-2 in favor of the hosts.
Gonzales cruised along until the top of the seventh when he permitted OC a single, retired the second batter, but then issued a walk that put a runner in scoring position. That was all for Gonzales as McM head coach John Byington summoned Mitch Labbie on to take over pitching chores.
Labbie did his job and got the next two outs to end the threat. But the War Hawks still trailed on the scoreboard. That is, until the top of the eighth.
Koll was hit by a pitch to open the McM half of the inning, and then went to second on a wild pitch. Sargent laid down a sacrifice bunt, but an errant throw allowed Koll to come around and score the tying run, while he stopped at second base, 3-3.
Simmons’ bunt single moved Sargent up 90 feet. That put him in position for Hagan’s second sacrifice fly of the game with what would prove to be the winning run, 4-3.
Labbie clipped the Eagles’ wings the rest of the way to earn his third victory (3-3) of the season. Labbie allowed just one hit in his 2 2/3 innings of work.
Hagan went 2-for-4 to lead McMurry’s six-hit attack.