April 19, 2006
By Jeff Honza
CHARLESTON, Ill. - Matt Brewer's game-tying home run and Hunter Harrigan's go-ahead single in the eighth inning helped Southern Illinois University (25-15) overcome a three-run deficit to beat Eastern Illinois (19-15), 4-3, earlier today at Coaches Stadium.
SIU trailed, 3-0, but scored four runs with the help of four two-out hits in the seventh and eighth innings.
EIU shutout SIU in the first six innings, where the Salukis left four runners in scoring position.
Brewer suddenly gave the Dawgs life with a leadoff single in the seventh, and scored on a two-out double by Nathan Emrick. Emrick's extra-base hit to the gap in left center, was one of three consecutive two-out hits, as SIU cut the lead to 3-2.
With two outs in the eighth, Brewer launched a high fly ball that managed to stay just inside the left field foul pole to tie the game. The homer marked Brewer's team-high fifth of the season and second in his last four games.
Dean Cademartori then singled up the middle and went to third on an error when the Panthers failed to pick him at first. Cademartori scored the go-ahead run on Harrigan's ensuing hit to give the Salukis a 4-3 lead.
Prior to the drama, EIU managed to build a quick 2-0 lead, despite being one-hit through four innings.
EIU had chances to blow the game open after loading the bases in each of the fifth and sixth innings, but came away with only one run.
The biggest of the two threats was in the sixth, where Ryan Campbell, Keiji Szalo and Casey Spears all singled off Ryan Welch to put Panthers on every base with no outs.
Shortly after Jason Cobb's sacrifice fly plated Campbell, left-hander Adam Snyder got Blake Meyer to hit into a double play to mop up the mess.
Adams, however, was credited the save, his second of the season.
SIU out-hit EIU, 12-6, with Brewer paving the way.
A native of Springfield, Ill., Brewer went 3-for-4 with a solo home run and two of his team's four runs. The three-hit game marked Brewer's second of the year.
SIU had two errors on the day, one of which led to one Panther run in the first.
That miscue came on the left side of the infield, where the Dawgs have committed 54 of their 94 errors this year.
SIU returns to Missouri Valley Conference action at Missouri State this weekend. The Salukis and Bears, currently tied for second in the league, open a three-game series on Friday at Noon, CST.