Eagles walk-off on home opener

The Eastern Michigan University baseball team rallied to a 7-6 walk-off win at its home opener at Oestrike Stadium in Ypsilanti, Friday, March 24.

“We’re still making too many mistakes early in ball games, but the guys never quit and I can’t be any more proud of them” said skipper Mark Van Ameyde. “You ask them to play hard and give effort, all the time, and they do.”

Starting pitcher Sam Delaplane had a shaky first inning, but settled in nicely. Delaplane allowed three runs and eight hits over five innings while striking out four. Delaplane’s solid outing kept the Eagles within one run through five innings of play.

Bowling Green scored three runs in the top of the seventh inning, jumping to a 6-2 lead, but Eastern Michigan answered right back in the bottom of the inning, scoring four of its own. Third baseman Devin Hagar delivered the game tying hit, evening up the score at six each. The score would stay that way until the nineth inning, as junior Justin McMurtrey pitched three innings in relief and struck out six.

Catcher Nick Jones was the hero on Friday night, as he delivered a bases-loaded single in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Eagles a walk-off win against the Falcons. Jones had a big night at the plate, as he went two for four with three runs batted in to help fuel the Eagles to its first conference win of the season.

“We made some defensive mistakes in the beginning of the game, and we didn’t let that bring us down,” said Jones. “We still had high energy because we knew we were better than this team.”

This was the first of a three game series against Bowling Green. Games two and three of the series will be played, March 25, at Oestrike Stadium.

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