This archived article was written by: Jeremy Jones
The College of Eastern Utah baseball team continued their six-week home stand against the Community College of Southern Nevada on April 9-10. The Eagles were able to improve against Southern Nevada this time around, but minimally. When the Eagles traveled to the defending national champion’s home field, they were routed all four games. This time around, the Eagles “were excited to play,” said interim head coach Eric Madsen.
During the first game, the Eagles were able to channel their excitement into solid hitting, fielding and good pitching effort by starter Kyle Tash. Tash pitched a complete game, giving up just one earned run off six hits while striking out six of the batters he faced.
The Eagles mustered some offense as well. The team strung together a series of hits and scored two runs in the first inning, taking a 2-1 lead into the second. Nothing happened for either side until the bottom of the third when sophomore DH Jake Southwick stepped up and sent a solo shot over the fence to put the Eagles lead at 3-1.
Each team tacked on one more run after that point and the Eagles took their first game from Southern Nevada in five tries this year 4-2.
After the first game, however, things went downhill for the Eagles. During the second game on Friday, April 9, Southern Nevada was able to hit the ball a lot more and the Eagles could not come up with an answer.
Starting pitcher Kameron Mickolio struggled early and only pitched one inning, giving up two runs on four hits. Sophomore lefty, Shad Romrell, took over after the first inning, but did not have much more success than Mickolio, giving up four runs off four hits in 3 2/3 innings pitched. Freshman right-hander Kollin Killian came in and closed the game out, not allowing another run, but the damage was done. The Eagles fell 6-2.
The next two games against Southern Nevada on Saturday had similar results as the second on Friday. Southern Nevada laid down a barrage of hits in the second, third, and fourth innings, scoring three runs in each inning. Again, the Eagles didn’t have an answer offensively of defensively. The Eagles went through four pitchers before the game was over, but the damage was already done. CEU fell 9-1.
The second game on Saturday went very much like the first. Southern Nevada hit the ball all over the yard and the Eagles couldn’t find anything to match them. Freshman Jeremy Lambson got the start, pitched 4 1/3 innings, and gave up six runs off of eight hits.
Offensively, the Eagles only managed one run off of three hits the whole game. The defense improved later on in the game, but, again, it was too little too late, and the Eagles fell again, 9-1.
The following weekend, April 16-17, the Eagles finished up their home stand facing off against the Dixie State Rebels. The Rebels came into the weekends’ games at 17-7 and in first place in the SWAC. The Eagles, after going 1-3 against Southern Nevada, sat in fifth place at 6-18.
In the first game, Tash again got the start. He gave up some runs early in the game and the Eagles were not able to battle back from behind.
The second game on the 16th was a defensive battle the whole game. Mickolio usually would have been the starter, but he was injured during his start against Southern Nevada, so Lambson got the go ahead. Lambson made the most of his opportunity, pitching a complete game and only gave up two runs. But, Dixie played some solid defense as well and only allowed the Eagles one run the whole game.
The first game on Saturday was another defensive battle that went down to the wire. Freshman Hanson Perkins got the start and pitched a strong game. Perkins gave up three runs through four innings pitched. The game was tied 3-3 after four innings.
But, in the fifth inning, Perkins was relieved and the floodgates broke for the Eagles. The Rebels rattled off seven runs in the fifth inning, putting the Eagles in a big whole. CEU tacked on one more run late, but it didn’t matter. The Rebels picked up the win 10-4.
In the Eagle’s final home game of the season, Kollin Killian got his first start of the season. During the last game, the Eagles finally found some offensive to go along with their defense.
Catcher Cory Newton smashed two home runs during the game and Dallas Christison added a grand slam in the fourth inning to put the Eagles up for good. Killian picked up the win as the Eagles beat the Rebels for the first time this season, 6-5.
The Eagles have three weekends remaining in conference play. This weekend, they travel to Colorado to take on Colorado Northwestern. After that, the Eagles will visit Salt Lake Community College and end the season at the College of Southern Idaho.