Mules Baseball splits a pair of games at SBU

Written by Muleskinner Staff

(BOLIVAR, Mo.) – The fifth-ranked Central Missouri Mules baseball team split a pair of extra inning games with Southwest Baptist on Wednesday at Dodson Field.
The Mules scored a 3-2 walk-off win in eight innings in game one before falling 8-6 in 13 innings in game two.
The Mules (18-4, 15-3 MIAA) traveled to Bolivar to play the Bearcats, but were still the home team in both games.
The Bearcats (9-14, 9-10 MIAA) got on the board first in game one scoring two runs in the top of the third inning. The Mules cut the lead in half with a single run in the bottom of the frame when Samuel Domingue’s sac bunt scored Chase Graskewicz.
The score stayed that way until the bottom of the sixth when John Oropeza’s double to deep center field scored Brad Wilson to tie the game at two. UCM threatened for more, but a double play ended the inning.
Neither team scored in the seventh sending the game to extra innings. After a groundout to start the inning, Kyle Grieshaber belted a 1-1 pitch over the wall in left to give the Mules the 3-2 walk-off win.
Jake Heissler (4-0) earned the win in relief for UCM. He tossed 1.1 perfect innings of relief. Starter Marshall Dean allowed two runs on three hits in five innings. Andrew Urban pitched 1.2 scoreless innings of relief as well.
Game two started off much the same as game one with neither team able to get much going offensively. The Bearcats got on the board in the third on a solo home run by Landon Young to take a 1-0 lead.
That lead held until the sixth when the Mules tied the game on Grieshaber’s second home run of the game. UCM held SBU in the top of the seventh to keep the game tied 1-1. The Mules then loaded the bases with two outs, but a groundout ended the threat and sent the game into extra innings.
Central Missouri loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the eighth, but Seth Wheeler lined into a double play to end the inning and continue the game. Neither team threatened in the ninth sending the game to the 10th.
The Bearcats pushed two runs across in the top of the 10th thanks to three hits and a Mule error. In the bottom of the frame the Mules were down to their final strike when John Oropeza was hit by a pitch. Kevin Gratza then walked on four pitches. Both runners came around to score when Wheeler laced a double to the gap in left center. He was stranded at second and the game continued on into the 11th.
SBU put up three more runs in the top of the 11th to seize control and take a 6-3 lead. The Mules came right back in the bottom of the inning to tie it. Wilson brought home two runs with a bases loaded single. Oropeza then doubled home Grieshaber to tie the game, but Wilson was gunned down at the plate trying to score the winning run. The Mules had runners on the corners with two outs following an intentional walk to Gratza, but couldn’t push the run across.
The Bearcats responded scoring two runs in the 13th to regain the lead. Ross Wolfe drew a two-out bases loaded walk to bring home the first run. After a failed pick off play at second base Bo Helsel raced home to score the second run on a close play at the plate.
The Mules went down in order in the bottom of the inning to end the game and give SBU the split.
Blake Kolons (0-1) took the loss in relief for UCM after allowing three runs on four hits in 2.2 innings of relief. Dany Coulombe allowed one run on five hits in five innings getting the start. He walked one and struck out seven.
Cole Roark (2-1) earned the win for the Bearcats after allowing three runs on four hits in three relief innings.
The Mules are back in action this weekend traveling to Edmond, Okla. to take on the Central Oklahoma Bronchos in a three-game series. Action gets underway Friday afternoon with a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. The series wraps up with a single game Saturday at 1 p.m.