SIUE Pitcher Collin Baumgartner Records Win, Cougars Edge UT Martin 3-2
EDWARDSVILLE – The SIUE Baseball team picked up a series sweep of UT Martin, defeating the Skyhawks 3-2 and 6-0 Saturday, behind solid pitching efforts each game.
With the two wins, SIUE improves to 12-21 on the season and 8-10 in the Ohio Valley Conference. UT Martin drops to 13-22 overall and 4-11 in OVC play.
"This was a big weekend for us," SIUE Head Coach Sean Lyons said. "To come away with a sweep is a step in the right direction for the guys."
SIUE's Collin Baumgartner picked up his first win on the season in game two of the series, pitching six complete innings and striking out eight batters. Reliever Cole Milam pitched three innings, preserving the Cougars lead and earning his third save on the season. Milam also had eight strikeouts.
"It really started for us on the mound this series," Lyons added. "Collin and Cole combined for 16 strikeouts today in game one, which was huge."
In game three of the series, Kenny Serwa made his second appearance of the year for the Cougars. He lasted five innings, striking out six, allowing no runs, earning his first win on the year. Adam Drewry, Ryan Byrd and Braydon Bone all made relief appearances, combining for five strikeouts and preserving the shutout for SIUE.
"Kenny was able to go a little deeper today," Lyons added. "Completing the shutout with a variety of guys out of the bullpen in Adam, Ryan and Braydon to finish. Pitching is an area that we have scuffled with the past couple weeks, and for those guys to step up and give us strong performances really helped the team."
Alongside strong pitching, the Cougars bats were hot Saturday.
In game two of the series, SIUE's Raul Elguezabal started the scoring with a single to left field, driving in Brock Weimer.
In the fourth inning, the Skyhawks scored their only run of the day with a Blake Davins singles, which drove in Blake Daniels.
The Cougars scored two runs in the sixth inning to round off the scoring for the game. Justin Perkins batted in Peyton Cordova-Smith from a sacrifice fly, and Jack Rigoni drove in Elguezabal from a single to center.
Already up 1-0 in the series finale, SIUE put up four runs in the fourth inning. Rigoni, Jordan Ross, Eric Giltz and Dustin Woodcock all drove in runs to extend the Cougars lead to 6-0.
"We were able to string together around six or seven singles in a row there in the fourth," added Lyons. "Guys really worked the whole field, and we were able to rally and separate for the win."
Cordova-Smith finished the series going 5-10 from the plate, with three runs and two RBIs.
The Cougars will play a lone mid-week home game against Western Illinois Tuesday at 6 p.m. SIUE will then play host to Valparaiso for a weekend series, with a single game Friday at 6 p.m. and a double-header Saturday starting at 1 p.m.