Austin Peay Sports Information
Murray, KY – Austin Peay State University’s baseball team saw too many scoring opportunities pass it by in a 6-4 Ohio Valley Conference loss to Murray State, Sunday afternoon at Reagan Field.Murray State (8-16, 4-5 OVC) claimed the three-game OVC series, 2-1, one year after sweeping Austin Peay in Clarksville, Tennessee. It is the Racers first back-to-back series wins against Austin Peay since the 1998-99 seasons.
Austin Peay (11-9, 5-4 OVC) will look back at the second and third innings as the opportunities it lost to build a large lead against Murray State. The Govs loaded the bases in both innings, including with one run in and one out in the second, but did not score in either situation, leading 1-0 after three innings.
Those six runners left on base were part of Austin Peay’s season-high 14 runners left on base against Murray State. Still, the Govs would extend their lead to 4-0 with solo runs in the fourth, fifth and seventh innings.
Murray State, which was held scoreless on two hits through the first six innings, would stun the Govs with six runs in their final two innings.
The Racers started the rally when the first two batters in the seventh reached base. Murray State moved the runners with a sacrifice bunt and scored their first run on a sacrifice foul fly at first base. A single drove in a second run and, after a two-out double, a passed ball allowed a third run to scramble home. Reliever Hunter Lindley came into the game and struck out a batter to end the frame with Austin Peay leading 4-3.
The eighth inning also will haunt the Govs as Lindley started the inning by retiring the first two batters he faced. Murray State kept the inning alive when left fielder Derek Yoder doubled just down the third base line.
The next Racers batter walked and Murray State center fielder Taylor Mathews put a bunt down the third base line. Lindley fielded the ball but his throw to first was in the dirt and rolled into the right field corner, allowing two runs to score. The Racers would get an insurance run on a single later in the inning, but the damage was done, Murray State holding a 6-4 lead they would not relinquish.
Lindley (1-1) would suffer the loss after allowing three unearned runs on two hits in one inning of work. Austin Peay starter Caleb Powell would not factor into the decision despite holding Murray State to three runs on five hits in 6.2 innings, striking out five.
Murray State reliever Cody Maerz (3-0) picked up the win after allowing one hit over the final three innings. He struck out four batters including the side in order in the ninth.
APSU second baseman Garrett Copeland pieced together a 3-for-4 outing to pace the Govs nine-hit attack. First baseman Dre Gleason went 1-for-3 but had two RBI – a RBI single in the second and a sacrifice fly in the fourth. Right fielder Josh Wilson had the Govs other RBI on a double in the seventh.
Mathews led the Murray State offense with a 1-for-3, two RBI performance. Second baseman Nick Moore and late substitute Clay Kelly each went 2-for-2 with a RBI.
Austin Peay is scheduled to conclude its five-game road trip with a 5:00pm, Wednesday contest at Southern Illinois. The Govs then return home to host Tennessee Tech in a three-game OVC series, beginning Friday.
Austin Peay (11-9 / 5-4) -vs- Murray State (8-16 / 4-5)
W:Maerz, Cody (3-0) L:LINDLEY, Hunter (1-1)
Austin Peay 4
2B:COPELAND, Garrett (1); SMITH, Ridge (1); WILSON, Josh (1)
SH:ROBLES, Alex (1)SF:GLEASON, Dre (1)
SB:COPELAND, Garrett (3); GRAY, Logan (2); SMITH, Ridge (1)
CS:WILLIS, Imani (1)HBP:WILLIS, Imani (1); GRAY, Logan (1); GLEASON, Dre (1)
E:LINDLEY, Hunter (1)
Murray State 6
2B: Yoder, Derek (1); Kelly, Clay (1)
SH: Moore, Kipp (1)SF:Mathews, Taylor (1)Baserunning
SB: Downey, Brock (1)
HBP: Downey, Brock (1); Yoder, Derek (1)
E: Lawrence, Tyler (1); McGowan, Matt (1)