May 21, 2011
EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. - SIUE baseball wrapped its 2011 season Saturday with a 4-1 win over Eastern Kentucky to sweep a three-game series at Simmons Baseball Complex.
The series marked the third three-game sweep this year for the Cougars. All of them have come against Ohio Valley Conference opponents. SIUE, 28-24, finished the season on an eight-game winning streak. The Cougars were 19-4 at home. SIUE was 15-4 against OVC teams, including going 10-0 in home games against OVC opponents.
"This was the kind of season you hate to see end," SIUE Head Coach Gary Collins said.
Eastern Kentucky, 21-34, got out to an early lead, scoring its only run in the first inning. Richie Rodriguez led off the game with a double then scored on a groundout by Jacob Daniel.
Travis Felax, 5-2, tossed seven innings in the win for the Cougars. Felax allowed the run on six hits. He struck out five.
"Starting pitching has been the key to our success," Collins said. "Travis was good again today."
SIUE evened the score with a two-out run against EKU starter Anthony Bazzani in the third inning. James Vazquez was hit by a pitch before back-to-back singles from Travis Becherer and Mitch Matecki. Vazquez scored on Matecki's single to make it 1-1.
The Cougars scored twice in the sixth inning to break a 1-1 tie. Devin Caldwell was a hit by a pitch to start the inning. Zach Hawkins followed with a single, and then Joel Greatting doubled to drive home Caldwell. Mike Swinnen followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 3-1 SIUE. Caldwell made it 4-1 in the seventh inning with an RBI-double that scored Vazquez.
"We got enough good swings to put up four runs and that was all we needed," Collins said.
Vazquez finished the day 3 for 3 with two runs scored. Hawkins was 2 for 3 with a run.
Bazzani allowed all four runs on eight hits. He fell to 1-9 with the loss. Austin Grisham was 4 for 4 to lead EKU.
Collins said he and his staff will work to maintain success into next season. "We will try and upgrade everywhere," he said. "That is the challenge now."
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