East Central hammers Hounds twice

CNJ staff

ADA, Okla. — While the Eastern New Mexico University baseball team remains in the thick of the race for a spot in the six-team Lone Star Conference baseball tournament, the Greyhounds are certainly having problems holding teams down of late.

With a chance to move into fourth place in the LSC, ENMU absorbed 14-10 and 20-12 shellackings at the hands of East Central, which started the day in last place in the 12-team league but earned a split in the four-game series.

The Hounds (18-20, 16-16 LSC), who appeared to have a favorable April schedule, have been outscored 149-90 in their last 12 games and have given up at least 12 runs in nine of them. They are 4-8 in that span.

East Central (8-20, 8-16) scored in all but three of its 14 turns at bat — including 11 of 12 after failing to scratch in the first two innings of the opener.

The Tigers pounded out 20 hits in the first game, 22 in the second. They had seven home runs from six players — four hitting their first long ball of the season.

ENMU led 4-0 in both games. In the seven-inning opener, the Hounds carried an 8-3 cushion into the bottom of the fourth, but the Tigers eventually took a 14-8 lead with a seven-run sixth that included a three-run homer by Zach Atkins and a two-run double by Dylon Howard.

Eight of ECU’s hits in the contest went for extra bases, including four home runs, while senior right fielder Ethan Wagner’s two-run homer in the third was ENMU’s lone extra-base knock.

In the second game, the Hounds got RBI singles from Jereme Johnson and Wagner and a two-run double from designated hitter Mitch Wolfe to take a 10-6 lead in the sixth inning. The Tigers roared back with five in the bottom of the sixth, five more in the seventh and four in the eighth.

Second baseman Luis Argumedes went 4-for-6 with a grand slam, four runs scored and five RBIs in the nightcap for East Central. Tigers shortstop Dylon Howard and left fielder Koby Temple each had three hits, including a home run, and four RBIs.

Wolfe drove in five runs for the Hounds with two doubles and his third home run of the season. Wagner went 3-for-4 and knocked in three runs.

The Hounds, tied for fifth with Texas A&M-Kingsville and one game behind fourth-place Angelo State, have four-game conference series remaining against last-place Central Oklahoma (11-20, 8-20) this weekend at Greyhound Field, at eighth-place Northeastern State (15-24, 13-19) April 16 and 17 and at ninth-place West Texas A&M (13-16, 9-16) April 23 and 24.