COOKEVILLE, Tenn. - There was no way. There was just no way the Golden Eagles (33-12) were going to let the East Tennessee State Buccaneers (25-19) shut them out for a second time this season. The Tennessee Tech baseball team made sure of it, defeating the Bucs, 10-6, Wednesday evening.
After falling behind 2-0 after the first inning, it seemed ETSU was destined to once again, shut down the Golden Eagle offense and pitch another shutout. Turns out, no such luck for the Bucs as Brandon Thomasson smacked a screaming line drive over the left field fence in the bottom of the second to set the tone for the rest of the contest. James Abraham tied the game up with a sacrifice fly and the Golden Eagles never looked back after the second inning.
In the bottom of the third, Tech really began to come alive, collecting three straight hits to open the inning. Zach Zarzour, Austin Wulf, and Zach Stephens all recorded singles, and Stephens drove in Zarzour for the first run of the third. Daniel Miles drove in the second run, hitting a sac fly to left center field. After a base hit by Dylan Bosheers, Cookeville native Tevis Sherfield drove in the third run with a single to second base. Abraham finished the scoring in the third with an RBI single to center field.
Stephens added to the Tech lead in the fourth, roping an RBI double to left center field to push the Golden Eagles out from 7-3.
The sixth inning essentially put the game out of reach as Tech put up two runs in a monster way. Following a quick ground out by Stephens, Thomasson connected on a 2-0 fastball, jettisoning it down the left line and way out of sight for his second dinger of the game. Miles stepped to the plate and followed suit, pulverizing his own solo shot to left center field to give the Golden Eagles back-to-back home runs for the fourth time this season. Miles has been a part of each of those instances as two have come with Thomasson and two have come with Bosheers.
The Bucs put three across the board the rest of the contest as the Golden Eagles added one more run to mark their third consecutive game with at least 10 runs. The win marked the 33rd of the season for Tech, putting the team just six away from the single-season program record of 39.
Junior righty Garrett Baugh (4-1) earned his fourth win of the season, tossing five innings while allowing six hits, three earned runs, and no walks. He struck out four ETSU batters.
Thomasson moved to the top of the Ohio Valley Conference home run list, adding his 11th and 12th dingers of the season. Stephens ranks second in the league with 11 moonshots and Daniel Miles is currently tied for third with 10 home runs.
Stephens led the squad with three RBI in the contest, grabbing two hits in five at-bats. Thomasson, Miles, and Abraham all drove in two runs apiece while Zarzour and Thomasson accounted for three runs scored each.
The Golden Eagles will continue their OVC bye week with a two-game stint on the road at Western Carolina. Game one is set for Friday, May 3 with first pitch scheduled for 5 p.m. CDT. Senior ace Tristan Archer will take the hill, in search of his career-high eighth win of the season.