WICHITA, Kan. – SIUE baseball dropped a 6-1 decision to No. 22 Wichita State Tuesday afternoon at Eck Stadium.
The Cougars were scheduled to open the home season Wednesday, but inclement weather has forced the postponement of that game, which will be made up later in the season.
SIUE fell to 4-6 overall. Wichita State, ranked 22nd in Collegiate Baseball's Top 30 poll, improved to 9-1.
"We were able to get a run with some two-strike hits," SIUE Head Coach Sean Lyons said. "It was big to get up early."
Wichita State grabbed the lead for good in the fifth inning. Noah Croft led off with a home run to tie the score. Following a pair of walks, a ground out moved runners to second and third. A wild pitch brought home the eventual game-winner in Jordan Boyer. After another walk, Mason O'Brien singled to plate two runs to make it 4-1.
Three of the runs were charged to SIUE reliever Brett Taucher (0-1). Taucher worked the third and the fourth without allowing a run, before running into trouble in the fifth. Overall, he allowed a hit, walked four and struck out three.
"Taucher was effective through his first two innings," Lyons said. "The solo home run and a couple of walks led to the big inning."
"Braydon Bone was a bright spot today," Lyons added. "He was pretty sharp today and looked good in the sixth and seventh."
The Shockers added two more runs on three hits in the eighth inning against A.J. Johnson. Croft picked up an RBI-triple and Luke Ritter added a sacrifice fly. Johnson struck out two.
The Cougars managed only three hits. Goecks had two of SIUE's hits.
"We had a really tough time getting something going offensively," Lyons said. "We're struggling at the plate and finding it hard to get opportunities to score runs."
All three hits came against starter Preston Snavely (1-0), who tossed five innings for the win. Alex Segal threw three scoreless innings and Tyler Davis worked the ninth.
Croft was one of four players with two hits for Wichita State, which finished with 11 hits.
Brock Fulkerson started the game for SIUE and posted two scoreless innings, while allowing four hits and striking out one.
SIUE will return to the road to open Ohio Valley Conference play beginning a three-game series Friday at Murray State.