May 3, 2006
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RICHMOND, Ky. - Brendan Murphy (Jr., Chattanooga, Tenn.) ripped three home runs, including the go-ahead two-run blast in the eighth inning, to lead the Marshall baseball team to a 14-12 win at Eastern Kentucky Wednesday afternoon at Turkey Hughes Field in Richmond, Ky. Murphy, who went 3-for-5 with seven runs batted in, now has a team-high 12 homers and 54 runs batted in this season.
Bryson Meyers (Sr., Oakland, Md.) tossed a third of an inning to improve to 2-0 on the season. Andrew Blain (Fr., Huntington, W.Va.) got the final two outs in a bases-loaded jam to record his first career save. Greg Harper (2-3) gave up two hits and three runs (two earned) in an inning to take the defeat.
Marshall (20-21) struck first with a four-run first inning. Adam Ptacek (Sr., Assaria, Kan.) led off with a single and one out later Rich Russell (Sr., Toronto, Ontario) walked. Roddy Stieger (Sr., West Chester, Ohio) followed with a single to load the bases, and Murphy cleared the bases with a grand slam over the right-center field wall.
Eastern Kentucky (21-20) answered with four of its own in the bottom of the first. Charlie Yarbrough plated the first run with a sacrifice fly to right field, but the ball was dropped by Brit Vincent (Jr., Bowling Green, Ky.). One out later, Tyler Nix hit a three-run homer to left field to knot the score at four.
Marshall scored once in the second on a Russell single to bring home Tommy Johnson
(So., Gaithersburg, Md.), but EKU came right back in its half of the inning with four-consecutive hits to start the inning to score two runs. Yarbrough brought home the third run of the inning with a groundout to shortstop, giving the Colonels a 7-5 lead.
Murphy shaved a run off the EKU advantage in the third inning with a long home run that sailed well out of the park, just to the left of the 415-foot sign in center field.
The Thundering Herd re-took the lead in the fourth inning, scoring four unearned runs. Marshall loaded the bases with no outs, but Murphy and Brent Mason (Sr., Sherwood, Ark.) followed with consecutive strikeouts. Vincent followed with a two-run single, and Aaron Levinson (Sr., Seattle, Wash.) brought home two more with a double to center field to give Marshall a 10-7 lead.
EKU rallied with four in the fifth inning against Adam Dobies (Jr., Pittsburgh, Pa.). The Colonels received a double from Lucas Waters that brought home two runs, then got a pinch-hit, two-run homer from Tony Wells to give EKU an 11-10 lead.
The Herd tied matters in the seventh when Adam Frederick (Sr., Franklin, Pa.) singled home Johnson, but EKU came right back with a run in the bottom of the inning on a solo home run by Keith Bolger.
Marshall grabbed the lead back in the eighth inning, as Murphy launched his third home run, a two-run shot to left-center to score pinch runner Chris Monaco (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.). The Herd added another run on an EKU throwing error to push the score to 14-12.
EKU loaded the bases with one out in the ninth, but Blain came in to strike out Wells looking and induce Brett Bolger to ground out to Levinson at shortstop.
Marshall remains on the road over the weekend, traveling to New Orleans for a three-game Conference USA series at Tulane. The series kicks off at 7:30 p.m. Friday, with 3 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday contests to follow at Zephyr Field.