Oklahoma Baptist’s fast start gives CU second straight L
SHAWNEE, Okla. – Cumberland University allowed nine runs in the first two innings, digging a hole it could not climb out of Wednesday night as the Bulldogs dropped their second straight contest with an 11-6 defeat at the hands of Oklahoma Baptist at Bison Field.
The 19th-ranked Bulldogs (13-4) concluded their seven-game, five-day trip to the Sooner State with a 4-3 mark, defeating No. 3 Oklahoma City University for three of the wins. During the trip, Cumberland hit 17 home runs after hitting 12 in the first 11 games of the season.
Cumberland starter Matt Vance struggled to find the strike zone early, walking three batters – all on four pitches – in the first inning, which saw 10 Bison batters come to the plate. Oklahoma Baptist turned all of the free passes into runs with two coming on a three-run homer by Anthony Ramirez and the other on a seeing-eye single through left side of the infield, that also plated Victor Manzano, who doubled. Billy Jarka hit a solo shot in the inning as the Bison scored six times on four hits in the frame.
David Fanshawe drove in the Bulldogs’ first run in bottom of the first with a single to the gap in left-center. The hit drove in Matt Greener, who doubled to lead off the inning.
After allowing a walk and giving up two singles in the second inning, Vance’s day was finished. He suffered the loss, falling to 1-1 on the year, giving up nine runs on six hits and walking four. The redshirt junior threw 45 pitches, just 21 of which were for strikes.
Troy Frazier sent a 2-0 pitch over the right field wall to make it a 9-3 game in the third inning. Max Kautz led off the frame drawing a full-count walk, but was out on a T.J. Murphy fielder’s choice before Frazier’s home run. The transfer from the University of Kentucky hit another dinger in the fifth inning. The solo shot was the seventh of the season and sixth of the Oklahoma road swing for Frazier.
Greg Appleton also had a round-tripper in the contest for the Bulldogs, with a solo homer in the fourth inning.
Cumberland added a run in the eighth inning as Greener sent a pitch right back up the middle off pitcher Kyle Brule’s leg. The ball bounced into right field and Greener slid in with his second double of the game. The CU third baseman came home on an RBI single off the bat of Fanshawe.
The Bison tacked on two insurance runs in the bottom of the frame, scoring on two hits and taking advantage of two errors.
Pitching in relief, Keith Kirby tossed 6 2-3 innings, giving up two runs on eight hits and striking out eight.
Cumberland will waste no time getting back on the field after returning to the Cedar City, taking on Shawnee State Friday at 1 p.m. The two teams will also play a doubleheader Saturday, starting at noon.