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March 29, 2009

USI and UMSL battle to doubleheader split

Box Score Game 1: Southern Indiana 22, Missouri-St. Louis 3

Box Score Game 2: Missouri-St. Louis 4, Southern Indiana 3


EVANSVILLE, Ind. The University of Southern Indiana baseball team split a doubleheader with the University of Missouri-St. Louis Sunday afternoon to start a four-game series. USI won the opener, 22-3, but lost the nightcap, 4-3.

The split takes USI's record to 18-8 overall, 8-2 GLVC, and 4-2 in the West Division, while UMSL goes to 9-14, 4-8 GLVC, and 1-1 in the West.

After spotting the Tritons three runs in the first inning, the Screaming Eagles pounded out 22 unanswered runs to win 22-3. The 22-run barrage was highlighted by a pair of three-run home runs by senior third baseman Alex Thieroff (Greenfield, Indiana) and a two sixth inning grand slams by senior rightfielder Chad Bruce (Fountaintown, Indiana) and senior first baseman Caleb Ehmke (Waterloo, Indiana).

Overall, the Eagles scored the 22 runs on 16 hits and were aided by three errors and six walks.

Junior right-hander Tyler Choate (Carmi, Illinois) posted his fifth win of the year for the Eagles. Choate (5-1) allowed three unearned runs and scattered seven hits, while striking out five in seven innings of work.


USI sophomore right-hander Ben Griggs (Evansville, Indiana) and freshman right-hander Zach Binder (Rushville, Indiana) finished the game for the Eagles on the mound, each pitching a scoreless innings.

In the nightcap, UMSL junior left-hander Gurdine Ackline quieted the USI bats to defeat the Eagles 4-3. The Eagles were only able to grind out three hits with Bruce hitting a two-run blast in the first inning to tie the game, 2-2.

The score remained tied until the top of the fifth when the Triton scored a pair of runs to take a 4-2 lead. USI tried to come back, cutting the margin to 4-3 with a tally in the bottom of the fifth, but stranded tying run at second in the fifth and the tying and go-ahead runs at second and third in the bottom of the sixth.


USI junior right-hander D.J. Smith (Vincennes, Indiana) took the loss for the Eagles, allowing six hits, four runs, three earned, and walked four in four-plus innings. Smith (3-1) was followed to the mound by junior right-hander Trevor Leach (Danville, Indiana), who allowed one hits and struck out three in three innings of work.

USI and UMSL are scheduled to finish the four-game series Monday with a 4 p.m. doubleheader at GCS Ballpark in Sauget, Illinois. The Eagles return to the friendly surroundings of the USI Baseball Field Wednesday when they host Northern Kentucky University for a 1 p.m. doubleheader.

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information

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