BELTON, Texas - Using a seven run sixth inning to their advantage, the East Texas Baptist University baseball team took down the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Crusaders in a 9-5 come from behind victory. With the win, ETBU goes to 10-6 overall and 4-0 in ASC play.
Offensively, Conner Combs led ETBU with a two-hit, two RBI performance while Jaxon Rader (two runs) and Brice Winter (one RBI) also had two hits each. Four other players had an RBI including Landen Barns, Casey Combs, Zach Compton, and Josh Warbington. Despite giving up five runs on eight hits in five innings, Zach Pollard got the win to start the game while Blake Corbin pitched four shutout innings of relief to earn the save while yielding just two hits and striking out four. For UMHB, Landon Dieterich (HR, 2 RBI), Mark Frankhouser, and Austin Branford each had two hits. Emery Atkisson contributed two RBI of his own. Nathan Kent started for UMHB and took the loss by going 5.2 innings allowing eight runs (two earned) on eight hits and four strikeouts.
ETBU struck first in the top of the first when after Rader led off with a single and Compton advanced on an error, Barns hit a sacrifice fly to to put the Tigers ahead 1-0. Good defense by ETBU prevented UMHB from scoring in the first three innings. Then in the fourth, UMHB took the lead on a solo home run and a wild pitch to go up 2-1. A single and a two-run double added three more runs to the Crusaders giving them a 5-1 lead after five.
That was when ETBU plotted their comeback. It started with a bases loaded sacrifice fly by Casey Combs followed by an RBI bunt single by Warbington to cut the lead to 5-3. An error on Rader’s at-bat made the score 5-4 before a bases loaded walk to Compton tied the game at five. After a pitching change, a wild pitch allowed ETBU took retake the lead before Conner Combs doubled in two more. When the bleeding stopped, ETBU led 8-5. An insurance RBI single by Winter in the seventh inning gave ETBU a 9-5 lead. That was all needed for the Tigers as Corbin held the Crusaders down to secure the win.
ETBU will play a doubleheader tomorrow as they look for the series win. The games start at 12:30 PM and 3:30 PM.