Orf, Bears earn season’s first road win over SHSU

Baylor-Sam Houston StatsBy Ryan Daugherty

The Baylor men’s baseball team had been on a slide, losing six out of its last eight games, but senior outfielder Nathan Orf and junior right-handed-pitcher Josh Michalec led the Bears to a 4-1 victory over the Sam Houston State Bearkats to get the Bears their first road victory of the season.

Orf went 1-4 but hit a 2-run double in the top of the sixth inning off of Bearkat pitcher Tyler Eppler to give the Bears a 2-1 lead. Prior to the sixth inning, the Bears had only two hits off of Eppler and were struggling to get runners in scoring position.

Freshman left-handed pitcher Sterling Wynn, who was previously 0-1 with an ERA over 6.40, started for the Bears and gave up a run in the bottom of the first inning.

However, he maintained his composure and didn’t allow a run for the rest of his time in the game. He pitched four innings and, along with one earned run, he only surrendered four hits and struck out three batters.

Michalec, who came into the game with a 2-1 record and a 4.20 ERA, stepped to the mound in the bottom of the fifth and pitched four and two-thirds innings.

Michalec gave up a single to the first batter he faced but retired the next three batters in the inning.

The top of the sixth inning was where the Bears gave themselves a serious chance to win the game. Sophomore outfielder Logan Brown and junior second baseman Lawton Langford both singled to left field. Then Orf came through with the biggest hit of the game launching a double to left center field, giving the Bears their first runs of the game and the lead.

Again, in the bottom of the sixth inning, Michalec gave up a leadoff double only to retire three out the next four batters.

After the Bears added another run off of a fielder’s choice from Brown in the top of the seventh, Michalec pitched a 1-2-3 bottom of the seventh inning.

In the top of the eighth inning, senior third baseman Cal Towey doubled to left center and went on to score on a fly out to give the Bears their final run of the game.

Michalec impressed again in the bottom of the eighth retiring three straight batters after Bearkat leadoff man Juan Cortina reached second base on an error.

Michalec retired the first two batters in the bottom of the ninth inning but then walked a man and gave up a single.

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Ryan Smith came in and got Bearkat designated hitter Hayden Simerly to fly out to earn his fourth save of the season and more importantly, the Bears’ tenth win of the season.

Michalec secured his second win of the season. He struck out four batters and gave up three hits in four and two-thirds innings.

As a team, the Bears tallied seven total hits and walked four times. They also stole four bases and only recorded a single error.

The Bears will next play in Stillwater, Okla., against the 18-3 Oklahoma State Cowboys Friday through Sunday. For the season, the Bears hold a 10-12 overall record and are 1-4 on the road after defeating the Bearkats.