Cougars Shut Out Panthers for Series Win
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – Three SIUE pitchers combined to shut out Eastern Illinois Sunday as the Cougars defeated the Panthers 2-0 in the finale of a three-game Ohio Valley Conference baseball series at Simmons Baseball Complex. SIUE won two of three from the EIU in the series.
"We're going to feel good if we take two out of three," SIUE Head Coach Gary Collins said. "This is a good league. It's going to be hard to get a sweep."
SIUE improved to 12-11 with the win and 2-1 in the OVC. The shutout was the first of the season for the Cougars. Eastern Illinois dropped to 8-13 and 1-2 in the OVC.
Thad Hawkins (1-0) started and worked six innings for the win. He allowed a single hit, struck out four and walked three.
"(Thad) had good stuff and pitched ahead of batters today," Collins said of his starter. "His fastball and changeup were good."
Brian Lorenz struck out two in two innings of relief. Dustin Quattrocchi followed with a scoreless ninth. He struck out one to earn his sixth save of the year. The six saves is tied for fifth most in a single season. The save was also the 10th of the senior's career which is tied for fourth most in school history.
"You have to give kudos to Lorenz," Collins added. "He bridged the gap to get to Quattrocchi."
SIUE scored both runs in the third inning. James Vazquez led off the inning with a single, and then advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Travis Becherer. Mitch Matecki then singled and stole second. Joel Greatting followed with a single off the second base bag which drove home both runners.
"That was a real tough at-bat (by Greatting)," Collins said. "He fought off some pitches and then was able to get the single up the middle."
Greatting finished 2 for 3 with the RBIs. Matecki was 3 for 4 with a run.
EIU shortstop Ryan Dineen's fourth-inning double was the only hit for the Panthers.
SIUE concludes its season-long nine-game home stand with a Wednesday night game against Missouri-St. Louis. First pitch is set for 6 p.m.