Led by Stephens, Tech hitters getting hot

Tech’s baseball team won its three-game series against Central Michigan 2-1 last weekend.

The first game of the series was high-scoring: Tech tied the game up at 10-10 in the bottom of the ninth inning when senior shortstop Chad Hayes got a hit and brought the tying run in. However, Central Michigan scored in the eleventh inning, with Tech failing to score again at the bottom of the inning, resulting in a tough loss.

“The way the season has been so far, it was a little tough, but we knew we were going to win the next day,” said Andy Williams, Tech sophomore pitcher. “We knew we didn’t play as well as we could have, but we were still in that game the entire time.”

Tech bounced back in a big way and won the next two, in what were also high-scoring games.

Tech trailed in the bottom of the seventh inning, 4-3, when senior Ben Burgess and sophomore Zach Stephens each got a two-run shot, putting Tech up 7-4. Tech won the second game after two rain delays.

Since the batters for Tech and Central Michigan were both hitting well in the final game of the series, both teams knew it would come down to the very end for a decided victor. Central Michigan held the lead 11-10 in the sixth inning, but in the bottom of the seventh, Tech put together a four-run rally taking the lead at 14-13. That score would not change.

“Our hitters right now are carrying us,” said Williams. “They’re picking up the slack where us pitchers might be having a tough time, but we’ll come around too, and we’ll pick them up sometimes when they need us, but they’re really helping us out right now.”

Tech has won four of its last six games, including a 5-1 win over the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

Tech starts a three-game series at the University of Tennessee at Martin tonight at 6 p.m. Saturday’s game begins at 2 p.m., and Sunday’s game beings at 1 p.m. Right-handed pitchers Tristan Archer and Matt Shephard are scheduled to take the mound in the first two games of the weekend.

During their recent six-game stretch, the Golden Eagles had five players bat at least .360 or better, including Austin Wulf and Ben Burgess, who have each tallied nine hits and driven in a combined nine runs.

UT-Martin enters the weekend with a 5-15 record, which includes a 2-1 record in its last three games. Recently, the Skyhawks defeated Christian Brothers, 10-1.