APSU Sports Information
Richmond, KY – The Austin Peay State University (APSU) baseball team grabbed early leads in both halves of its Ohio Valley Conference doubleheader against Eastern Kentucky, Saturday, but could not hold on in either case and fell 9-2 and 11-3 at Earle Combs Stadium.
Austin Peay (15-15, 9-6 OVC) opened both games of the twin bill with a first-inning home run.
In the opener, it was shortstop Garrett Kueber who hit his first homer of 2019 to give the Govs a 1-0 lead. In the nightcap, center fielder Garrett Spain provided two runs with his second home run of the series and third of the year.
In the opener, Eastern Kentucky (19-14, 6-6 OVC) waited until the second inning to respond to Kueber’s early blast. The Colonels pieced together what proved a decisive four-run second inning in the day’s first game. After loading the bases with one out, EKU saw left fielder Will Johnson hit a two-run single followed by second baseman Ryland Kerr’s RBI single.
The Colonels would chase Governors starter Jacques Pucheu in the fourth inning with another four-run outburst. Johnson started the rally with a leadoff home run which was followed by three EKU singles. Catcher A.J. Lewis followed with a two-run double to end Pucheu’s day and secure the victory.
In the night cap, Eastern Kentucky responded to the Spain home run with three runs in the bottom of the first. The Colonels opened with back-to-back singles from Johnson and Kerr, driving in the first run. Govs starter Brandon Vial nearly escaped further damage but designated hitter Charles Ludwick hit a two-run single that gave EKU a 3-2 lead.
The Govs and Colonels exchanged runs in the third before EKU added two runs in the fourth – Johnson hitting his second solo home run of the day and Lewis supplying a key RBI single – to take a 6-3 lead.
Austin Peay threatened in the fifth, bringing the tying run to the plate with two out. Eastern Kentucky turned to reliever Aaron Ochsenbein, their stopper, to face Austin Peay right fielder Parker Phillips. The battle between the two lasted one pitch, Phillips lining out sharply to left field to end the threat.
Both Pucheu (4-1) and Vial (3-3) suffered through their shortest starts of the season. Pucheu allowed eight runs on eight hits in four innings of work. Vial surrendered four runs on eight hits in his three innings.
Spain had three hits on the day, including his two-run home run in the nightcap. Catcher David Martinez had three hits and two RBI in the doubleheader.
Johnson went 2-for-4 with three RBI in the opener and followed that with a 4-for-5, one RBI nightcap performance. Kerr went 4-for-5 in the opener, the duo pacing the Eastern Kentucky offense.
Austin Peay returns home to begin a five-game homestand with a 6:00pm, Tuesday, April 9th contest against Evansville on Joe Maynard Field at Raymond C. Hand Park.