ACU takes three games from Hounds

CNJ staff

ABILENE, Texas — The first “tripleheader” in Eastern New Mexico University baseball history — actually, a doubleheader plus the completion of a game suspended after three batters on Friday night — didn’t go too well for the Greyhounds.

ENMU, which won Friday’s seven-inning Lone Star Conference series opener at Abilene Christian 4-3 with two runs in the top of the seventh, was outscored 40-13 on Sunday in dropping 15-5, 12-5 and 13-3 decisions to the 11th-ranked Wildcats.

The Hounds (14-15, 12-12 LSC), fourth in the conference after Friday’s win, fell to seventh place with the three losses, one-half game behind Southwestern Oklahoma (16-13, 11-10) for the final spot in the LSC postseason tournament in early May. ENMU has five four-game conference series remaining, beginning this weekend against Southwestern at Greyhound Field.

ACU (22-7, 14-6), currently second in the LSC behind Cameron (17-9, 16-6), took complete control of the nine-inning opener with an eight-run second highlighted by a two-run double from pitcher William Calhoun and a two-run homer from first baseman Brett Bochsler. The Wildcats ended it on the 10-run rule with three in the bottom of the seventh.

Calhoun (5-0) went the distance, allowing eight hits and striking out five. Tyler Vance (1-2) gave up 10 hits and seven earned runs in 1 2/3 innings.

ENMU sophomore designated hitter Mitch Wolfe hit his second home run of the season, a three-run shot in the sixth. Senior catcher Paden Vendrely added a solo blast, also his second, in the seventh.

In the seven-inning middle game, the Hounds led 3-1 after a two-out, two-run single to center by Luis Quinones in the second and an RBI single by Wagner in the third. ACU, though, moved in front when center fielder Aaron Oliver clubbed a three-run homer in the bottom of the fourth before the Wildcats chased ENMU starter Justin Cotten (0-2) with a four-run fifth.

Wagner accounted for ENMU’s other runs with a two-run homer, his third, in the sixth inning.

The finale, scheduled for nine, ended in the bottom of the eighth on the 10-run rule when the Wildcats plated five runs off outfielder Jereme Johnson, pressed into mound duty in relief.

ENMU carried a 3-1 lead into the bottom of the fifth before Clint Bowker belted a two-run triple and Travis Latz followed with a two-run homer off ENMU closer Anthony Smith (2-2), who went five innings in his first starting assignment of the season.

Wagner went 6-for-11 for the day, senior third baseman Sean Cruce was 5-for-10 with a pair of doubles and junior shortstop Kevin Thompson finished 4-for-9 with a triple.

The Hounds step outside the conference today with a 2 p.m. game at New Mexico Highlands.