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Screaming Eagles stun Golden Eagles with ninth-inning comeback

Screaming Eagles stun Golden Eagles with ninth-inning comeback

By Mike Lehman, TTU Sports Information

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – It was a turbulent ninth inning for the Tennessee Tech baseball team Saturday afternoon, as Ohio Valley Conference rival Southern Indiana scored six runs in the bottom of the final frame to shock the Golden Eagles in a 7-5, walk-off decision at USI Baseball Field.

Overshadowed by the loss was another brilliant outing on the mound by Tech (13-10, 1-1) starter Peyton Calitri. The senior hurler completed a season-high 7.2 innings while allowing just a single run on six hits and one walk. He also struck out nine Screaming Eagles (10-12, 1-1) while shutting out USI over the opening seven frames.

The home squad finally got to the Golden Eagle righty in the eighth, opening the bottom half using a triple and sacrifice fly ball to score its first run of the day. The Screaming Eagles could not be stopped in the ninth inning, racking up four hits and two walks on three different Tech pitchers.

USI used an RBI single and a two-run base knock to pull within a single marker, but it was the final swing of the day that did the trick. Without recording an out, the Southern Indiana offense capped the comeback with a three-run, walk-off home run.

Tech did all of its scoring in the third frame on Saturday, using five hits and a pair of USI errors to do its damage. After a lead-off, infield single by right fielder Theo Bryant IV, left fielder Austin Turner drove in the first run of the contest with a triple to right-center field.

Two batters later, catcher Hayden Gilliland turned on a 1-1 offering down in the zone, smashing a two-run blast to right field for his fourth long ball of the season and a 3-0 lead. Shortstop Tanner Shiver reached on a defensive miscue by the Screaming Eagles and promptly stole second base.

Designated hitter Preston Ford followed with an RBI single to center field and then took Shiver's example to steal second. Third baseman Eddie Garza capped the scoring with an RBI single to right field. Bryant and Ford each produced a team-high two hits in the contest.

The rubber match of the series will kick off at 1:00 p.m. CT Sunday afternoon.

File photo by Jim Dillon

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