May 3, 2009

Golden Eagles and Thoroughbreds called early due to rain, end in 1-1 tie

MURRAY, Ky. -- MURRAY, Ky. – Some small-ball from the Tennessee Tech baseball team that resulted in a run scored in the top of the fifth inning ended up being the difference in the game, as Tech and Murray State finished in a 1-1 tie after five innings due to rain.

The Thoroughbreds drew first blood, scoring a run in the third inning with the help of a triple, followed by a balk from pitcher Ryan Dennick.

In the top of the fifth, Heath Cheverton reached on an error by the shortstop, and Alex Henry laid down a sacrifice bunt to put Cheverton in scoring position with one out. Casanova Donaldson took first base after being hit by a pitch, which brought up Tech’s RBI leader A.J. Kirby-Jones. Kirby-Jones flew out to right-center, which left Tech with two men on and two outs. Freshman Ben Burgess then made the clutch hit, an RBI single that got through the right side to score Cheverton and tie the game at 1.

Dennick pitched 4.2 innings for Tech, and allowed three hits and one run while striking out four.

Burgess finished the game 2-for-3 from the plate, with an RBI. Evan Webb, Donaldson and Cheverton each finished 1-for-2 in the contest.

The Golden Eagles are now 7-11-1 in Ohio Valley Conference play, and 22-20-1 overall. Tech has one OVC series remaining, a three-game home series against Jacksonville State on May 9 and 10.

Tech is currently battling for the sixth and final spot in the OVC tournament, which takes place May 20-24 in Paducah, Ky. The Golden Eagles were a half game ahead of idle Eastern Kentucky for sixth place in the OVC standings heading into the weekend, before going 0-2-1 against MSU.

The last time Tech finished in a tie was a season ago, when inclement weather forced Tech and Middle Tennessee to a 6-6 tie on February 26, 2008.