Featured photo by Ryan Loftis
Story by Conner Smith
Murfreesboro, TN- Middle Tennessee baseball could taste a series win over Western Kentucky, all it had to do was take the Sunday afternoon game. Just like every other game in the series, it was a comeback that sent the Blue Raiders home winners with an 8-6 victory.
It was all Western early as it scored three runs through three innings. Gino Avros, who made just his second start of the season, is the one that put the Blue Raiders on the board with a two-out single in the fifth.
Western followed that with two more runs in the sixth to increase the Hilltoppers’ lead to four. The Blue Raiders rallied and plated two runs themselves from an error off the bat of Avros.
The Hilltoppers hit a home run to left field to pad their lead. After a Jeremiah Boyd single and a passed ball that scored Brett Coker in the seventh, WKU’s lead was cut to just one.
Gabe Jennings tied the game at 6-6 when he scored on an eighth-inning wild pitch. JT Mabry tied the game after he knocked a single that drove in Luke Vinson and Avros.
“We faced a couple of good arms. I stayed locked on,” Mabry said. “I got behind in the count, but I stayed with the approach we’ve been talking about. I feel like I’ve been comfortable in mine, and it paid off there in the end.”
James Sells threw a scoreless ninth to earn his first victory of 2023 while giving his team the series win.
“I was proud of the fact that we continued to battle and that we continued to scrap,” MTSU head coach Jerry Meyers said. “We handled some things really well late in that game to put some pressure on them, and it was a good job all the way around. It may have been one of the colder games that most of these guys have played in.”
The Blue Raiders are back in action against the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. CT. They look to avenge their loss to the Golden Eagles just two weeks ago.
Conner Smith is a sports reporter for MTSU Sidelines. If you have information for a story, you can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.