ST. LOUIS, Mo. – The Spalding University baseball team split a double header against Fontbonne, winning game one ,3-2, but dropping game two, 8-7, Saturday in St. Louis, Mo. With two wins over number 6/12 ranked Webster Wednesday, the Golden Eagles went 3-1 on the week against teams ranked in the top-25 and/or receiving votes.
LOCATION: Shaw Park | St. Louis, Mo.
RECORDS: Spalding 13-7 (3-1 SLIAC) | Fontbonne 14-3 (1-1)
SPALDING 3 – FONTBONNE 2
The Golden Eagles took the lead in the top of the first. Garrett Wilson reached on a fielding error, stole second and moved to third on an Eric Meyer single to right field. Quenton Brownlee singled driving in Wilson and a throwing error by Matt Tossick allowed Meyer to score to make it, 2-0, Eagles. Fontbonne's Lance Champman evened it up in the bottom of the fourth with a two-run homer to left field. SU pitcher Zach Jone's held the Griffins to one hit over the next two innings, and senior Cody Milliner hit a solo homer, his first collegiate home run, to put Spalding in front, 3-2. Jones struck out the first batter of the seventh, forced a groundout on the second, but gave up a single to the third. Head Coach Matt Downs elected to go to the bullpen for the final out, and senior Lane Staples deliver forcing a groundout to shortstop to end the game earning the save.
Zach Jones (4-0) earned the win, holding the Griffins offense to two runs, on seven hits, while striking out three batters, in 6 and 2/3 innings pitched. Eric Meyer continued his hot streak at the plate going 2-for-3, while Brownlee and Milliner each went 1-for-3 with one RBI.
FONTBONNE 8 – SPALDING 7
The Eagles found themselves trailing 8-0 through four innings. Spalding gave up four runs in the bottom of the first. The first on a Braeden Dobbs double, and the next three on a Michael Puckett Jr. three-run homer. The Griffins added a run in the second on a Gus Purschke sac fly. With one out in the fourth and runners on first and second, the Golden Eagles looked to have gotten out of the inning turning a routine 6-4-3 double play, but the field umpire called the runner at first safe, and the Griffins took advantage scoring three runs on back-to-back hits by Dobbs and Puckett Jr. Despite an eight-run hole, the Golden Eagles were not going out without a fight. Zane Baker got SU on the scoreboard in the top of the fifth, singling to left field driving in Cody Milliner. In the fifth, it was Milliner again, this time driving in a run with a single to left field scoring Eric Meyer to cut the deficit to six runs. The Golden Eagles rolled to a five-run seventh trimming the deficit to one run. Garrett Wilson singled to right scoring Jacob Reece, Evan Trentman followed with a single to center scoring JT Johnson, and Meyer singled to left to score Wilson. Milliner capped off the inning with a two-run single to left field bringing around Trentman and Brownlee for the final runs of the inning to make it, 8-7. The Golden Eagles threatened in the top of the ninth with Trentman and Meyer both nearly hitting home runs, but both balls were caught at the wall, and Brownlee struck out for the final out of the game.
Milliner led the Golden Eagles at the plate, going 2-for-4 while driving in three RBIs. Baker, Johnson and Meyer each finished 2-for-4 with Baker and Meyer driving in one run apiece. Hayden Davenport (1-2) suffered the loss, allowing five runs, on seven hits, while striking out five batters and walking one, in 3.0 innings pitched.
The Golden Eagles return home hosting a SLIAC weekend series against the MacMurray Highlanders at Derby City Field. The series will kick-off with a Saturday double header beginning at 1:00 pm ET, and concludes with nine innings Sunday at 12:00 pm ET.