The University of Arkansas at Monticello baseball team rode a stellar performance on the mound by Mason Philley to earn a doubleheader split on the road Friday against East Central. The Weevils fell short in a slugfest in game one 10-6, but Philley shut down the Tiger offense in game two as UAM took the victory 8-1.
UAM moves to 6-11 overall and 6-8 in Great American Conference play. ECU is now 3-15 on the season and 3-11 in league contests.
Game One: ECU 10, UAM 6
After a quiet opening two innings at the plate for both teams, the Weevils got the scoring rolling in the top of the third with a sacrifice fly by Andrew Piraino to bring home Joe Jaco.
ECU responded in the bottom of the frame against UAM starter Matt Lundh plating three runs on four hits to take the lead.
UAM got one run back in the next inning on a sacrifice fly by Nick Fakouri that scored Dylan Borman.
The Weevils went to the bullpen in the bottom half of the fourth and the Tigers welcomed Connor Wilkerson to the mound by scoring four runs on four hits in the frame.
Again UAM chipped away at the deficit in the fifth bringing home one run on an RBI-single by Jordan Johnson.
Another pitching change started the bottom the fifth for the Weevils, but that did not slow down the ECU offense as the Tigers scored two more runs against Jared Roberts.
UAM tried to slowly climb back plating one run in the seventh on a groundout by Piraino cutting the deficit to 9-4.
ECU, however, tacked on one more run in the bottom of the frame against Trent Bunting who took over on the mound for the Weevils in the sixth.
UAM started to make a rally in the eighth as Grant Shepherd doubled home a run and Cole Muckleroy followed with an RBI-single, but the inning would end with the bases full of Weevils.
The Weevils could not carry the momentum into the ninth leaving two runners stranded in the frame ultimately losing 10-6.
Lundh (L, 0-2) ended with the loss allowing three runs on five hits in his start.
Working in relief Wilkerson surrendered four runs on four hits in 1.0 inning, Roberts gave up two runs on one hit in 1.1 innings and Bunting allowed one run on one hit in 2.2 on the mound.
Spencer Johnston (W, 1-3) picked up the win pitching 7.2 innings while giving up six runs on 10 hits.
Game Two: UAM 8, ECU 1
The Weevils’ offense carried its effective approach at the plate over to the second game of the day, but the headliner of the contest was UAM starter Mason Philley.
The lefty took the bump for game two of the doubleheader and quieted the ECU offense.
The Weevils got the early lead for Philley as Shepherd picked up an RBI-single and Piraino worked a bases loaded walk to put UAM up 2-0 in the second inning.
The only trouble Philley would run into came in the bottom of the second as ECU plated its only run of the contest, but left two stranded on base.
Shepherd got that run right back for the Weevils in the third with an RBI-single to center scoring Aaron Gaela.
UAM added three more runs in the top half of the fourth on RBI-singles by Johnson and Trey Forsythe as well as a sacrifice fly off the bat of Hudson Hopkins.
Two more runs came across for the Weevils in the fifth with Johnson picking up another RBI on a sacrifice fly and Hopkins driving in his second run of the game with a single through the left side.
Philley settled in on the mound after the second inning holding ECU to just the one run. The Monticello, Arkansas, native struck out at least two hitters in all six of his innings on the bump including striking out three in his final frame in the sixth. The 6’3” lefty recorded a career high 15 punch outs to earn his first win of the season.
The Weevils turned to Livan Cordova to close out the contest in the seventh as he worked a scoreless frame delivering UAM the 8-1 win in game two.
Seven different Weevils registered at least one hit in the game with Borman, Forsythe and Shepherd leading the way with two apiece.
Philley (W, 1-2) earned the win dealing 6.0 innings while striking out 15 ECU batters and allowing just one unearned run on two hits.
Ryan Collins (L, 0-5) took the loss surrendering five runs on five hits in 3.1 innings of work.
UAM will go for the series win in game three Saturday against the Tigers. First pitch is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.