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Oral Roberts Evens Series with Cougars

Peyton Codova-Smith
Peyton Codova-Smith

TULSA, Okla. – Oral Roberts took game two of a three-game series with SIUE baseball, earning a 4-2 win Saturday and setting up a rubber game Sunday afternoon.

Sunday's game has been pushed up to noon because of the threat of rain later in the day.

The Cougars fell to 3-5. Oral Roberts improved to 6-2.

"This was a well-pitched game by both teams," SIUE Head Coach Sean Lyons said. "This was a great learning experience for our guys. It was a good baseball game and will be like an OVC weekend game."

Oral Roberts took the lead with two runs in the first against SIUE starter Ryan Byrd with four hits.

The Cougars got on the board in the second inning courtesy of a two-out home run from Brock Hammit, his second of the series.

"Brock has been a welcome surprise since being inserted into the lineup," Lyons said. "He's provided some thump."

Nick Rotola tripled to lead off ORU's fourth inning. He scored on a base hit by Cal Hernandez to make it 3-1.

Peyton Cordova-Smith doubled down the right field line to lead off the sixth inning. He moved to third on a groundout and then scored on a sacrifice fly Jared McCunn to cut the lead to 3-2.

Byrd pitched into the sixth where he issued a one-out walk to Pearson. Pearson stole second and advanced to third on a line out. He scored on an RBI-hit by Hernandez. Byrd allowed four runs on eight hits and a walk. He struck out three.  

"Ryan did a nice job," Lyons said. "After struggling in the first inning he really settled in and threw well."

Chris Robinson followed with 2.2 scoreless innings out of the bullpen. He allowed just a single hit and struck out three.

"Chris allowed the inherited runner to score," Lyons said. "But he did a good job getting out of the sixth inning as well as in the seventh and eighth innings."

The Cougars finished with six hits and left six runners on base.

"We hit a lot of balls hard, but a lot of balls were right at guys, which kept us from getting much going offensively," Lyons said.

Cordova-Smith had three of the Cougars' six hits.

"Peyton is a good hitter," Lyons said. "He finds a way to put the barrel on the ball and he can use the whole field.

Rotola and Hernandez each had three hits for the Golden Eagles, who finished with nine total hits.

SIUE right-hander Kenny Serwa is slated to start the series finale Sunday.

"The guys understand that we can go out and play well and get a series win Sunday," Lyons added.

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