MVC Baseball Drops Doubleheader to Graceland University
MARSHALL, MO -- The Missouri Valley College baseball team welcomed in Graceland University for a Heart of America Athletic Conference doubleheader Monday afternoon at Indian Foothills Park. Graceland took the first game 11-2, and in game two a comeback attempt by MVC came up short with Graceland holding on for a 6-4 win.
Graceland got out early against the Vikings in game one, scoring three runs in the top of the first inning on starting pitcher Junior Brady Nowak. The Vikings tried to put together a rally in the bottom of the second inning after Freshman Third Baseman Devin Burnworth reached on an error and Senior Shortstop Troy Langan walked, but both base runners were stranded to end the potential rally.
MVC was poised to threaten in the bottom of the third inning when Junior Rightfielder Tyler Siem walked to lead off the inning and was moved to second base on Junior Second Baseman Tim Roddy's sac bunt, but again the Vikings left a runner stranded. Graceland was able to pad their lead in the fourth inning by scoring two runs, and added another four runs in the fifth inning. MVC eventually got on the board in the bottom of the fifth inning when Roddy was brought home on Sophomore Catcher Anthony Corona's sac fly to center.
The Vikings were able to add another run in the bottom of the sixth inning, again on a sac fly, when Sophomore Third Baseman Ruben Panigua hit a fly ball to right-center field allowing Burnworth to score to make it a 9-2 Graceland lead. The Yellowjackets added two more runs in their at-bat in the seventh inning and defeated MVC 11-2. Nowak took the loss going 3.1 innings giving up three hits and five runs while walking four. Burnworth recorded two hits and scored a run for MVC. Roddy, Warchuck, and Sophomore Designated Hitter Garrett Burke accounted for the other three Viking hits.
In game two of the doubleheader the Vikings put themselves in an early hole thanks to four errors in the first inning that helped Graceland score five runs. The Vikings did chip away at the early Graceland lead by scoring two runs of their own in the bottom of the first inning. A double to deep right-centerfield by Freshman First Baseman Greg Gilreath brought two runs home, and the Vikings trailed by 5-2 after one inning of play.
MVC got two more runs in the third inning when Third Baseman Paniagua singled to bring home Junior Designated Hitter Josh Hartin. The Vikings got one more run when Freshman Right Fielder Anthony Patchin singled to score Gilreath and put MVC down by a 5-4 score. The Vikings threatened again in the bottom of the fourth inning, but left two base runners stranded, and then stranded another base runner in the fifth inning. Graceland padded their lead by one run in the top of the sixth inning by one run to lead 6-4, but the Vikings only put two men on base in the final two innings. Graceland held on for the 6-4 victory.
Leading the way for MVC from the plate was Hartin who finished two for three with two runs scored and a walk. Also with two hits were Freshman Leftfielder Cole Teaford, Senior Shortstop Troy Langan and Gilreath. Picking up the loss on the mound for MVC was Freshman Devin Burnworth going the full seven innings giving up eight hits, six runs, two earned, with three strikeouts. The losses drop MVC to 2-16 overall and 1-9 in HAAC play. Graceland improves to 15-11 overall and 6-4 in conference play.
The Vikings are scheduled to play in a doubleheader against Hannibal-LaGrange University on the road Tuesday. First game of the doubleheader takes place at 1:00 p.m.