SHAWNEE – The Bison's hot streak at the plate continued Monday as OBU defeated visiting Central Oklahoma, 8-1, in their 2019 home finale at Bison Field at Ford Park. With the win, the Bison avenged their 7-2 interstate non-conference loss in Edmond on March 5.
After UCO took a 1-0 lead in the top of the second, OBU's Eric Carlson quickly evened the score with a solo home run, his fourth in the last two games. Brock Carter doubled to center field, scoring Kaimana Bartolome, then hustled home on a Joey Pledger foul out to make it 3-1 in favor of the home team.
The Bison added another score in the fifth before tacking on three more runs in the sixth. Gozzo drove in two with an RBI double, later scoring on a wild pitch. The senior right fielder collected his third RBI of the night in the eighth on a long fly out to center that brought Pledger home from third.
Coach Bobby Cox's pitching staff posted another solid outing as starter Andrew Eppenbach fanned six Bronchos, giving up just one unearned run in 6.1 innings to pick up his third win of the season. Hudson Pearson pitched 2.2 innings in relief, surrendering just one hit to go along with six strikeouts.
The Bison travel to Bethany this weekend to face off with Southern Nazarene in their final Great American Conference regular season series of the season. The teams will play Friday night at 6 p.m., before wrapping up with a 1 p.m. doubleheader at Feland Field.
OBU Sweeps East Central in Weekend Series
Oklahoma Baptist swept its series with East Central Saturday. The Bison run-ruled the Tigers in the first game for a 14-4 victory. OBU then put up 16 in a wild game two, defeating ECU 16-8.
In game one, OBU came out strong offensively, putting up five runs in both the first and second innings. Kaimana Bartolome, Joey Pledger, and Brett Bloomfield all recorded RBI hits during the two-inning stretch. Jake Gozzo, PJ Harris, and Bartolome each added home runs in the later innings to add to OBU's lead.
Starter Jake Lipetzky had a strong outing for the Bison in game one, striking out 10 batters while giving up just two runs on five hits.
In game two, OBU came out of the gate hot with Eric Carlson blasting a three-run home run, batting in Gozzo and Harris. East Central scored six runs in the top of the second to take a three-run lead, but the Bison answered back in the bottom of the second with three runs of their own. The first two runs were scored on a double by Garrett McKee and a groundout by Harris, driving in Brock Carter and Bloomfield, respectively.
Carlson continued his stellar day with a third home run in the bottom of the fourth, and an RBI single to put up the final run of the day.
With Carlson's three home runs, he is now second on the team with 10 for the season.
OBU concludes its home schedule on Monday against the University of Central Oklahoma, starting at 6 p.m.