Freshman Kyle Pauly tossed three scoreless innings to earn his first career save.
April 5, 2014
CARBONDALE, Ill. – Southern Illinois bounced back with a 6-1 win Saturday afternoon at Itchy Jones Stadium to even its series with Bradley. The Salukis (17-13, 2-3 MVC) built a 4-0 lead after three innings and never looked back. SIU has now won eight of its last 10 games against the Braves (16-9, 2-5 MVC).
The Salukis gained control of the game when they stretched the lead to 4-0 with three unearned runs in the bottom of the third. Parker Osborne started the rally with a single to left field. He advanced to second when Bradley second baseman Chris Godinez misplayed a potential double play ball off the bat of Cody Daily.
Ryan Casillas drove in the first run of the inning with a double to left field to score Osborne. Casillas now has 12 RBIs in his last six games. After Daily scored on a wild pitch, Tyler Rolland capped the rally with an RBI single.
The Salukis scored five of their six runs on the day with two outs in the inning.
“We did a much better job of picking each other up,” Henderson said. “We got some base hits in some crucial situations, so I was proud of our offense.”
Todd Eaton turned in one of his best starts of the year to earn his second win. He scattered eight hits and held the Braves to a single run in six innings of work. He took advantage of a day when the ball was not carrying, recording 11 of his 18 outs in the air.
“I didn’t have my best stuff today,” Eaton said. “I just located my fastball in quite a bit, got it in on their hands and got a lot of flyball outs. Tyler (Rolland), Parker (Osborne) and (Dyllin) Mucha did a good job tracking them down.”
In Eaton’s final inning, he worked a quick 1-2-3 inning that featured three flyballs that were caught at the outfield fence.
“Todd was getting tired, and fortunately they stayed in the yard,” Henderson said. “Obviously the ball wasn’t carrying as well today as it was last night. He did a great job pitching to contact. He didn’t worry about getting strikeouts. He let the defense make plays.“
Dyllin Mucha continued his hot hitting with a pair of singles to up his average to .349. The freshman had an RBI single in the bottom of the second inning to give SIU a 1-0 lead. Mucha drove in Matt Jones, who reached on a one-out double down the left field line.
The Dawgs added a run in the fourth when Jake Welch worked a two-out walk, and Osborne drilled a double to the left-center field gap to stretch the run to 5-0. He had two RBIs in the game.
Bradley finally got on the board in the fifth when Max Murphy and Greg Partyka hit back to back doubles to cut the Saluki lead to 5-1. The first double came immediately after Osborne made a tremendous diving catch to take extra bases away from Chris Godinez.
“I thought I had a play on it, and luckily it stayed in my glove when I dove,” Osborne said. “I had to look down to see if I still had it.”
Kyle Pauly was the only reliever Southern used and earned his first save with three scoreless innings of relief. He allowed one hit and retired nine of the 10 batters he faced.
The Salukis will try to even their conference record with their first conference series win of the season when they host Bradley in the finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Itchy Jones Stadium.