Photo Courtesy: UCA Media Relations (Steve East)
TULSA, Okla. (UCA) -- The Oral Roberts Golden Eagles scored twice in the bottom of the ninth inning to beat the University of Central Arkansas Bears 4-3 in Southland Conference action on Sunday afternoon at J.L. Johnson Stadium.
ORU (8-15, 3-0) swept the opening series from UCA (18-6, 0-3).
The Bears led most of the day behind the pitching of junior starter Bryce Biggerstaff, and took a 3-2 lead into the ninth inning. ORU catcher Jose Trevino led off with a solo home run off Biggerstaff on a 3-2 count. Senior Ethan McKinzie replaced Biggerstaff and allowed a base hit to Tyler Boss and a walk to Matt Brandy.
Chris Williams' sacrifice bunt moved both runners up before McKinzie intentionally walked Kevin Cho to load the bases with one out. Austin Colt struck out for the second out but leadoff batter Nate Goro singled through the right side of the infield to score Boss with the game winner.
UCA senior Ethan Harris, who was 3 for 5 and scored all three of UCA's runs, smacked a solo home run over the ORU bullpen in right field to lead off the second inning to give UCA its first lead of the series at 1-0. The Bears loaded the bases in the inning but left them stranded.
UCA, which out-hit ORU 12-9, strung together three hits in the third inning, with catcher Michael Marietta bringing in another run on a single that scooted through the right side of the infield, scoring Harris for a 2-0 lead.
The Golden Eagles tied the game with two runs in the sixth inning on a wild pitch and an RBI single by Jose Trevino. The Bears re-took the lead in the top of the seventh when Harris doubled to left and Garrett Brown brought him in with a base hit.
Biggerstaff allowed seven hits and three earned runs in eight innings, striking out two and walking one. Tim Zufall got the victory for the Golden Eagles, going 3 2/3 innings in relief, striking out four and allowing three hits and one run. Marietta finished 3 for 3 and Brown was 3 for 5 for the Bears.
UCA plays at Oklahoma State on Tuesday before returning home for an SLC series with Lamar beginning on Thursday.