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Big innings do in Governors in loss to Hilltoppers

APSU Men’s Baseball

Austin Peay State University GovernorsClarksville, TN – In a game of big innings, Austin Peay’s baseball team could not muster enough of them in a 17-6 non-conference loss to Western Kentucky, Tuesday night at Raymond C. Hand Park.

Austin Peay (15-16) posted the game’s first big inning, scoring four runs in the first. Center fielder Michael Blanchard tied the game after racing around the bases following at error that allowed his fly out to find the ground. The Govs added three more runs with two outs in the inning one on catcher Matt Wollenzin’s single and two more on shortstop Reed Harper’s double, giving APSU a 4-1 lead.

Austin Peay starter Andy Cox could not work around a defensive miscue in the fifth and the Govs loss to Western Kentucky, Tuesday. (Robert Smith/The Leaf-Chronicle)
Austin Peay starter Andy Cox could not work around a defensive miscue in the fifth and the Govs loss to Western Kentucky, Tuesday. (Robert Smith/The Leaf-Chronicle)

Western Kentucky (21-12) countered with four in the third, eight in the fifth and three more in the ninth. Center fielder Kes Carter’s grand slam in the third gave Western Kentucky a 5-4 lead it would not relinquish. The Hilltopper’s fifth inning was assisted by a pair of Governors defensive miscues, with the eventual game-winning run scoring on an infield error.

Governors’ starter Andy Cox (0-2) suffered the loss after allowing 11 runs (eight earned) over four-plus innings. Each of Austin Peay’s four pitchers surrendered at least one run in the loss.

Austin Peay’s offense rapped out 14 hits, but the majority of the work was done by the bottom half of the order. Wollenzin, the six-hole hitter, was 2-for-4 and was followed by Harper who also went 2-for-4. Second baseman Jordan Hankins batted eighth and was 3-for-4 while nine-hole hitter, left fielder Cody Hudson was 2-for-3.

Hilltoppers’ starter Taylor Haydel (4-2) picked up the victory after allowing six runs (two earned) on 11 hits in five innings.

Carter finished the night 4-for-6 with five RBI to lead Western Kentucky’s 14-hit effort. Catcher Matt Rice also had four hits and finished with three RBI.

Austin Peay returns to action with a 6:00pm, Wednesday home contest against Belmont.

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