Photo Courtesy: UCA Athletics
Conway, Ark. (UCA) -- The Central Arkansas baseball team continued its winning ways on Wednesday afternoon, picking up a 7-1 win over Mississippi Valley State.
The Bears (8-1) gave Clint Green (1-1) his second start of the season, and he rewarded them well, building on the success he showed early in his previous start, a loss at #2 Vanderbilt. In that start, Green threw 4-plus innings of five run baseball, giving up single runs in the first and third innings before running into trouble in the fifth inning. Against Mississippi Valley State on Wednesday, Green was on cruise control for most of his 5.1 innings, holding the Delta Devils hitless until the first inning. By the end of his appearance, Green had allowed one run on three hits and two walks while striking out one.
After Green made his exit, the Central Arkansas bullpen slammed the door on the Delta Devils, combining to throw 3.2 innings of scoreless, hitless ball. John Kordsmeier finished off the sixth inning for Green before Blake Clayton came in and handled the seventh inning, striking out the side. Freshman righty Connor Gilmore and junior lefty Jon Rand combined to cover the eighth inning, and sophomore right-hander Connor McClain closed the game out, striking out the side in the ninth inning. All told, the bullpen recorded six strikeouts and issued one walk in its time on the mound.
The Central Arkansas offense, which had been firing on all cylinders coming into the game, got off to a bit of a slow start, tallying two hits and one run in the game's first three innings. But things began clicking again in a fourth inning that saw the Bears add three hits and two runs to their totals. From that point forward, the offense appeared to be its normal, effective self, recording four runs and four hits over the final four frames.
Every Central Arkansas starter recorded a hit in the game, with five Bears collecting RBIs. Right fielder Forrestt Allday led the way with a 2-for-4 day, hitting a triple and scoring two runs. The Bears continued their habit of taking advantage of free bases, drawing five walks and one hit batsman, as well as scoring a run on a balk.
Central Arkansas returns to the field on Friday, squaring off with New Orleans on Friday night at 6:00 pm. On Saturday afternoon, the Bears will battle perennial national power Wichita State at 4:00 pm, before closing the weekend against New Orleans on Sunday afternoon at 1:00.