EDMOND, Okla. — Central Oklahoma is usually not a good place for a baseball team to try to break out of a slump.
Eastern New Mexico University’s Greyhounds saw their losing streak reach 10 games on Saturday, dropping a tight 4-3 decision in the opener of a Lone Star Conference crossover doubleheader before losing to the Bronchos 9-1 in the second game. The teams finish off the series — pushed back a day by wet grounds — with a doubleheader today.
The Hounds (16-14) left the bases loaded twice in the opener. Central Oklahoma’s Brett Case (5-2) struck out Mike McDuffie and Kelton Hayes to escape a first-inning jam, while reliever Cameron Karner got Matt Hinojosa on a line drive to center to leave the sacks filled in the sixth.
Down 2-0, ENMU tied the score in the fourth on a two-run homer by catcher Brian Green, but it could have been more. McDuffie beat out a one-out infield hit, but then got picked off before Hayes walked and Green followed with his first home run of the season down the left field line.
The Bronchos (16-10), the favorites to win the LSC North Division this season, regained the lead in the bottom of the inning with a pair of runs. Derrick Kennedy’s RBI single in the fifth knocked Case from the box and pulled ENMU to 4-3, but Karner survived two hits and a walk in the sixth to earn his first save of the season.
The second game was scoreless until the Bronchos loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the third on three singles — including two bunts. Designated hitter Doug Yarholar then unloaded them with a grand slam home run to left off ENMU left-hander Seth Clabaugh (0-3).
The Bronchos added four more in the fourth, two on a double by Brandon Bacon. Starter Jesse McGough cruised through six innings for the win, allowing only an unearned run in the fifth.
Central Oklahoma finished with 11 hits, getting two each from four players.