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No. 7 BSC wins twice at Hendrix

Zach Wingate (photo by Cari Dean)
Zach Wingate (photo by Cari Dean)

CONWAY, Ark.—Thanks in part to two saves from senior David Bourbonnais, the No. 7 Birmingham-Southern baseball team picked up two Southern Athletic Association wins on the road today, defeating Hendrix 2-1 and 8-6 in Conway, Ark.

The Panthers moved to 29-7-1 overall and 15-4-1 in the SAA, moving atop the league standings; the Warriors fell to 17-19 overall and 7-13 in conference play.

BSC scored single runs in the top of the second and fourth innings of game one, courtesy of RBI singles from senior Casey Lambert and junior Taylor McCracken. Hendrix cut it to 2-1 with a run in the bottom of the sixth, and got the game-tying run on base in the bottom of the ninth with two outs on the board, but the Panthers collected the final out to clinch the win.

Senior Blake Stevens (8-1) started and threw eight innings, giving up four hits, one earned run, and one walk, while striking out 12 Warriors. Bourbonnais came in for the final inning, giving up one hit with one strikeout for his seventh save of the year. McCracken was 3-4 at the plate to lead BSC.

In the seven-inning nightcap, the Panthers scored in the top of the first on a sac-fly by senior Jacob Mayfield, and the Warriors tied it up in the bottom of the second before BSC added four in the top of the third to pull ahead for good. Hendrix cut it to 5-2 in the bottom of the third, but the Panthers added another run in the top of the fifth, and then led 8-4 after the top of the sixth. The Warriors scored the final runs of the game in the bottom of the sixth, cutting it to 8-6, but were unable to get on base in the bottom of the seventh.

Sophomore Ryan Gaines (6-3) started on the mound and went five innings to get the win, allowing 10 hits and four earned runs with one walk and five strikeouts. Junior Wilson Jamison came in for two outs before Bourbonnais moved from designated hitter to pitcher to finish the game and pick up save number eight on the year.

Four Panthers had multiple hits, with sophomore Zach Wingate going 3-4 with a game- and season-high five RBIs, sophomore David Scott going 2-2, and McCracken and sophomore Sam Roberts both going 2-3.

The teams wrap up the series tomorrow at noon for the final game of the regular season before opening postseason play next weekend. BSC has clinched a hosting spot and will finish as either the one or two seed in the standings, hosting a four-team double-elimination tournament as part of the SAA Championship. The top two seeds host, followed by the two winners facing off in a three-game title series.