Baseball sweeps double-header at Southwest Baptist

Bolivar, Mo. -- Missouri Southern freshman lefty Payton Walker nearly missed out on a no-hitter and senior Nick Doughty six RBIs in game two as the Lions swept a double-header at Southwest Baptist today by the scores of 4-1 and 12-0. 

Southern (27-16, 21-14 MIAA) banged out 23 hits on the day, seven in game one and 16 in game two. The Lions sit in fourth place by themselves in the MIAA, one game in front of Central Oklahoma, with one week left to play in the regular season. 

Ryan Bates started in game one for the Lions and the junior went all seven, allowing just one earned run and striking out five, while walking one. Walker went all seven in game two as the Lions utilized the run rule. The freshman nearly missed out on a no-hitter when a grounder took a bad hop early in the game. He struck out five and walked just two to move to 5-4 on the season. Bates moved to 5-1 on the season. 

Southern scored a run in each of the fourth and fifth innings of game one, as back-to-back sacrifice bunts scored Thomas Wilson in the fourth and double from Tee Helsel scored Sam Ryan in the fifth. 

RBIs from Michael McCoy and Dallas Burke in the sixth drove in the final two runs for the Lions. SBU added one run in the seventh. 

McCoy, Burke and Helsel had two hits each, while all three drove in a run each in the game. McCoy, Ryan, Wilson and Shaun Hoover scored a run each. 

The Lions got on board with three separate four-run innings in game two. Southern started the scoring with a pair of home runs in the fourth as Will Wagner had a solo bomb to center, his seventh of the season, and Doughty picked up his first of the season, a three-run blast to right field. 

The same two players struck again in the fifth as Wagner had an RBI single to score Ryan, and Doughty added a two-run double. Ryan had driven in Burke earlier in the inning. 

Ryan started off the seventh with a homer to left. Doughty had another RBI, scoring Wagner, while Hoover and Burke would drive in a run each in the inning. 

Doughty went 3-4 with six RBIs and two runs scored on the game. Burke, Ryan, Wagner and Hoover all had a pair of hits each, while Ryan and Wagner had home runs in the game. Wilson and Wagner would score three times as Wilson was 3-3 on the day, as well. 

The Lions will get back at it this Tuesday evening as Southern will travel to Pittsburg State for a double-hitter beginning at five pm. The games are part of the Sonic Trophy Series.