With another strong pitching performance the Murray State baseball team leads the series against the South Dakota Jackrabbits 2-0 after a 6-1 finish Saturday.
Murray State Head Coach Rob McDonald credited outstanding pitching as one of the core reasons behind the win.
“I was pleased with our guys because I thought we executed a lot better offensively, we got four sacrifice bunts down and some clutch hitting,” he said. “Our defense has been really good, but it all starts with the pitching and our pitching was very good. So put all that together and usually makes for a good game.”
The Jackrabbits took the lead in the fifth inning when sophomore starting pitcher Cameron Finch gave up his only run of the game.
The Breds’ came back in the sixth after senior Travis Isaak took advantage of a fielding error and senior Jacob Rhodes took a walk. Mike Kozlowski then delivered a sacrifice bunt, which set up Corey Bays to deliver an RBI ground out. Cody Larson drove in the second run with a single to right field ending the inning 2-1.
In the eighth, the Breds’ scored four runs. Kozlowski began the inning with a single up the middle and Bays followed with a sacrifice bunt before Larson delivered an RBI double which Luke Daugherty capitalized on by scoring a run on a single up the middle. Paul Ritzheimer ran in two runs with a double into leftfield.
“I think it was a really good team win,” McDonald said. “Cody Larson made some big hits that were key. Our guys had a really good team win.”
Finch recorded the win only allowing one run and six hits during seven innings. Luke Shuemaker earned the save allowing only one hit in two innings.
Isaak, Kozlowski and Larson set the pace each earning two hits. Larson and Ritzheimer recorded two RBIs each.
“I feel like we are improving with each game, and that is what you hope for early in the season,” McDonald said. “It’s not always smooth sailing but I feel like the guys are getting more confident with every game.”
The ‘Breds finish out the series against South Dakota State Sunday. The first pitch is set to go at noon.