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April 21, 2003

Eagles split with Bellarmine on Monday

Game 1: Southern Indiana: 4 Bellarmine University: 3
Game 2: Bellarmine University (12-31, 9-17): 9 Southern Indiana (17-23, 8-13): 6

University of Southern Indiana sophomore pitcher/designated hitter Matt Keener (Newburgh, Indiana) returned to the line up for the first time in six games to lead the Eagles to a game one victory over Bellarmine University Monday afternoon at the USI Baseball Field. Keener had missed the last six games due to a cut on his left knee, suffered in the win over Lewis on April 12.

In game one, Keener returned to the mound to raise his record to 4-0 in the Eaglesí 4-3 victory. Keener went 6 2/3 innings and set down 12 straight batters between end of the first inning and the start of the fifth inning. The right-hander allowed seven hits and three runs (one earned), while striking out five. Junior right-hander Drew Neel (Newburgh, Indiana) finished the game for Keener and picked up his first save of the year.

Keener helped himself at the plate with a one-for-three performance, including a RBI double in the third inning.

USI sophomore centerfielder Noah Wetzel (New Salisbury, Indiana) led the Eagles offensively in the first game. Wetzel, who tied a USI single-game record with four stolen bases, was three-for-four with a run scored.

The Knights outscored the Eagles 4-1 in the ninth inning to win game two, 9-6. USI had comeback from a 4-1 deficit to take the lead, 5-4, with a run in the fifth and three more in the sixth. Bellarmine set the scene in the ninth with a run in the seventh.

Neel took the loss in the second game and fell to 2-4 in 2003. Senior right-hander Bowie Johnson (Brazil, Indiana) started the game for the Eagles and went 6 1/3 innings. Johnson allowed nine hits and five runs, while Neel allowed three hits and four runs in his 2 1/3 innings of work.

The Eagles were led offensively in game two by senior leftfielder Andy Nucci (Ft. Wayne, Indiana). Nucci was three-for-five with a run scored, a double, and an RBI. Senior rightfielder Steve Owen (Wauwatosa, Wisconsin) and senior catcher Paul Kohler (Arnold, Missouri) followed Nucci with a pair of hits each. Kohler also scored three of USIís six runs in game two.

Todayís doubleheader marked the first two of five games in four days for the Eagles. On the road, USI will play at Indiana University-Southeast Tuesday, April 22, at 3 p.m. and a single game at Oakland City University Thursday, April 24, at 2 p.m. At home, the Eagles will host a single game with Kentucky Wesleyan College at 3 p.m. Wednesday, April 23.

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information
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