NSU offense explodes in 20-7 win over Lions

Joplin, Mo. -- The Northeastern State RiverHawks hit four homers and banged out 27 hits to defeat the Missouri Southern Lions 20-7 Tuesday evening (Apr. 13) at Joe Becker Stadium.

The score was knotted at 1-1 when Eric McKinney and Chris Gallegos homered in the third inning to put the RiverHawks up by two runs. 

The Lions responded as Joe Lincoln hit a solo homer and Michael Zurmehly hit a two-run shot as the Lions scored four times in the bottom of the third for a 5-3 lead.

The RiverHawks (17-27) then exploded for seven runs in the top of the fourth as Gallegos homered for the second time, a three-run shot that snapped a 5-5 tie.  NSU scored two more times in the inning to take a five-run lead.

The RiverHawks continued to pull away with two runs in the fifth and three more in the seventh for a 14-5 lead.

Jacob Taylor hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the seventh that scored Lincoln as the Lions (17-20) tried to rally.

But the RiverHawks scored three more runs in the eighth to put the game away.

Starter CJ Maffei took the loss in allowing eight runs on 10 hits in 3 1/3 innings.

Taylor was 2-of-3 at the plate, with two RBI and three runs scored. 

The Lions will next play at No. 8-ranked (Div. II Collegiate Baseball) Emporia State for a four-game weekend series in Emporia, Kan.  The Lions and Hornets will kick off the weekend series with a single game Friday night (Apr. 16) at 6 p.m.