Emporia State falls 4-1, eliminated from NCAA Tournament

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May 19, 2018-(Courtesy: ESU Athletics) Emporia State’s late season turnaround came to an end in a 4-1 loss to Central Oklahoma in an elimination game at the NCAA Division II Baseball Central Regional Tournament in Magnolia, Ark. on Saturday.

Both pitching staffs held the offenses in check with runs coming across in only two innings of the game.

The Bronchos took the lead in the third inning. Xavier Warren led off with a single and went to third when Justin Brown reached on a error while trying to lay down a sac bunt. After a strike out Xavier Freeman singled to short right field to load the bases.  Trae Smith hit the first pitch he saw over the fence in right for a grand slam and 4-0 Broncho lead.

The Hornets answered in the top of the fourth when Mack Gowing reached on a error by shortstop and went to second on a wild pitch.  Bryce Fischer got the first hit of the day for Emporia State when he reached on a bunt single to put runners at first and third.  Mason Brown hit a sac fly to right center to put the Hornets on the board.  Kaden Shaffer singled to put two runners on but the Bronchos got a fly out and ground out to end the threat.

That would be the only scoring in the game as both bullpens combined for 10.1 shut out innings the rest of the way.

Taylor Thompson took the loss for the Hornets allowing four runs, three of them earned, on six hits in 3.0 innings with four strikeouts and no walks.  Trey Taylor, Layne Downing and Drew Scrimsher combined to throw 5.0 shut out innings on just three hits while each recorded a strikeout.  Gowing scored the only run for the Hornets on Brown’s RBI.  Fischer and Shaffer each got a hit for the Hornets.  Defensively Mason Brown threw out two runners attempting to steal and had four caught stealings on the weekend.

Emporia State finishes the season 34-24 and advanced to their fifth straight NCAA Tournament – the longest active streak in the Central Region.

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