Drew Bowen got some run support on Saturday afternoon as the Golden Eagles rolled past Sam Houston State, 7-2, to clinch the series.
Bowen went 8.1 innings and allowed just four hits in the ball game. He finished with four strikeouts en route to his second victory of the season.
The Golden Eagles improved their record to 13-23 overall and 8-6 in conference play. They moved into a tie for third in the conference standings with the Bearcats as they fell to 8-6 in conference action and 22-17 overall.
ORU, SHSU and Lamar are within a game of first place as Southeastern Louisiana, Stephen F. Austin and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi hold the top spot with 9-5 conference records.
One of the top hitters in the lineup with runners in scoring position, senior Nate Goro, struck again in the top of the fourth with a double over the center fielder’s head to score Jose Trevino and Tyler Boss.
Trevino reached base two spots before Goro with a single to right and Boss drew a walk to set up the double.
Goro is hitting .305 this season with runners in scoring position, second only to Logan Domenico who entered the game with a .351 average.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Bearkats cut the ORU lead to 2-1 with a pair of back-to-back doubles down both lines. At the plate with Luke Plucheck on second, Ryan O’Hearn put the ball in the right field corner to score Plucheck.
After O’Hearn advanced to third on a groundout, he was gunned down trying to score on a wild pitch. The pitch trickled away from the plate, but Trevino made a great sliding play to get the ball to Bowen to put out O’Hearn.
Plucheck continued to carry the Bearkats as he made a diving catch to rob Kevin Cho of a hit, ending the top of the seventh, which would have scored Williams. In the bottom of the inning, Plucheck tied the game at two with a blast over the left field wall.
The top of the eighth became the second big inning of the series for the Golden Eagles, scoring five runs on three hits and an SHSU error.
Matt Brandy started the inning with an infield single and advanced to second as Logan Domenico laid down a sacrifice bunt. After a pitching change, Brandy moved over to third on a wild pitch.
The Bearkats intentionally walked Trevino after the wild pitch, setting up a single to left from Boss to score Brandy. Goro then stepped in and drew a walk to load the bases for the Golden Eagles with just one out.
Following yet another pitching change for the Bearkats, Williams sent the first pitch deep to right to score Boss from third.
The inning continued with Brandon Healy at the plate as the Golden Eagles got creative with a delayed double-steal. Goro took off to second and Boss took off for home as soon the throw left the catchers hand. Boss beat the throw back home.
With Goro standing on third after he advanced on the throw attempt to get out Boss at home, Healy hit a grounder that was misplayed by the Bearkat second baseman. Goro crossed the plate on the play.
The fifth run of the inning came as Austen Colt doubled down the left field line to score Healy.
Trevino had his second multi-hit game in as many contests with two hits, equaled by Brandy on Saturday. Goro’s two-RBI double led the team, while Boss, Williams and Colt each drove in runs.
The final game of the series is set for 1 p.m. on Sunday.