By Sports Information Assistant Hunter Bower
LAKE CHARLES – The McNeese State baseball team got off to a hot start in game one of Friday's Southland Conference doubleheader using 16 hits to defeat Oral Roberts, 12-6, before the Golden Eagles used a two-hit shutout in the nightcap to cool the Cowboys' bats and tie the series up with a 2-0 victory.
Both teams will meet in the rubber match on Saturday with first pitch slated for a 3 p.m. start.
The game can be heard on Cajun Radio-1470 AM in Lake Charles and online at cajunradio.com. Tom Hoefer will provide the radio broadcast.
McNeese moved to 13-8 overall on the season and 3-2 in league play while ORU got to 10-11 overall and a 2-3 mark in conference action.
Below is a recap from both games:
Game One: McNeese State 12, Oral Roberts 6
Jackson Gooch had a standout game at the plate as the senior outfielder used a 3-for-5 showing along with four RBI and a double to help propel the Cowboys to a 12-6 win over Oral Roberts in game one of the day's doubleheader.
McNeese recorded double digit hits for the 15th time in 20 contests this season as the Cowboys used 16 hits over the Golden Eagles.
"I thought our guys came out to play in both games tonight," said Cowboys head coach Justin Hill. "Lucas Quary threw the ball really well early in game one and our offense did a good job in taking advantage of the elements. We swung the bats well and found ways to keep getting base runners.
Six different McNeese batters recorded two or more hits in the game while first baseman Chayse Marion and second baseman Cameron Toole recorded three RBI in the game.
Cole Prejean (2-1) picked up the win for the Cowboys after coming in to pitch 3.1 innings of relief work and allowed no runs to score and just one hit.
ORU got out to quick lead as Tyler Boss used a home run over the left field wall to five the Golden Eagles a 1-0 lead in the second inning.
McNeese responded with a 4 hit, 4 run outing in the bottom of the third, highlighted by Gooch's three-RBI double off of the left center wall while short stop Connor Lloyd drove Gooch into home later in the inning with a single to center.
The three run lead was cut down to a 4-3 score in the fourth inning as ORU got a two-RBI from catcher Audie Afenir with two outs in the inning.
The Golden Eagles regained the lead in the next frame using a three-run bomb from shortstop Jose Trevino as he sent the quadruple hit over the left field wall for a 6-4 lead.
McNeese began chopping away at the two-run lead as the Cowboys used Chayse Marion's first moon shot on the season in the bottom of the fifth inning to cut the lead to a 6-5 score.
Oral Roberts could not overcome the five-run burst from the Pokes as they used a three-run home run from Cameron Toole and a two-RBI double from Chayse Marion to give their team a commanding 10-6 lead.
Insurance runs were added by the Cowboys in the eighth inning as Gooch singled into the infield to drive in Toole to score while Lloyd scored Gooch off of a center field single to score the 12th and final run of the game.
Game Two: Oral Roberts 2, McNeese State 0
The Golden Eagles used a two hit, complete game shutout from right-hander Guillermo Trujillo to cool off the McNeese bats in game two of the doubleheader and even the series with a 2-0 victory.
"You run into a really good arm sometimes and we did tonight," said Hill. "I thought he pitched really well tonight and held our guys down tonight. I thought we were a couple of quality at-bats from getting into the game but credit to him for keeping us out of it."
The Cowboys two hits on the night came from second baseman Andrew Guillotte and outfielder James Cantu.
Michael Clemens (3-1) drew his first loss of the season after tossing 7.0 innings and gave up only two runs on seven hits while he struck out six batters.
ORU struck in the second inning with a fielder's choice-RBI from second baseman Dean Wilson to gain a 1-0 lead over the Cowboys.