Missouri Western baseball dropped three out of four games in Warrensburg against No. 2 ranked Central Missouri to start MIAA Conference play.
The Griffons bats came out hot in game one as Nate Ramler hit an RBI single that scored Michael Schulze in the first inning.
In the top of the fourth inning, Bubba Dotson and Grant Fink led off with back-to-back homeruns. Spencer Shockley hit an inside-the-park homerun that put the Griffons on top 4-0 after four innings.
The Griffons added three more runs in the fifth inning as Dotson, Kyle Simpson and Shockley all crossed home plate to put Western up 7-0.
Pitcher Ethan Ward shut the Mules down until the fifth inning, when he gave up three hits and two runs. Central’s attempt at a comeback fell short as Ward improve to 1-1 on the season, striking out four batters and pitching seven innings. Western won game one 8-2.
The Mules bounced back in game two with hot bats, defeating the Griffons 11-0.
Pitcher Brandon Simmons’ record fell to 2-1 on the season as he gave up five runs in five innings. The Griffons offense totaled five this for the game.
In game three, Shockley and Dotson hit doubles in the second inning while Simpson hit a single and the Mules made two errors to put the Griffons up 4-0.
Homeruns by Fink and Ramler increased the lead to 6-0 after the top of the sixth inning. In the bottom of the sixth, Western committed two errors of its own and Central scored seven runs highlighted by a three-run homerun by Jon Cotter. Central led 7-6 after six innings.
Ramler got a single in the seventh to give Western the 8-7 lead, but it wasn’t enough as the Mules got a bases loaded single to win the game 9-8 in the bottom half of the inning.
The Griffons got out to a 1-0 lead in game four, but Central responded with two runs in the bottom of the second to take a 2-1 lead. The Mules never looked back and went on the win the game 7-2.
Western fell to 5-6 overall and 1-3 in MIAA Conference play after facing some very tough early competition.