OMAHA, Neb. – Fighting Leatherneck baseball dropped two in a twinbill with the Omaha Mavericks on Tuesday (May 14) in Omaha. Three separate Leathernecks hit home runs in the doubleheader and as a team Western out-hit Omaha in both games, but errors proved costly for the Purple & Gold and they could not pull out a victory.
Game 1: Omaha 7, Western Illinois 6
A late inning rally would not be enough for the Leathernecks in game one of the doubleheader as the Mavericks came out on top 7-6. Omaha scored in each of the first four innings of the seven-inning contest and held off Western in the seventh to capture the win.
Neil DeCook led all hitters in the game and set a new career high with three hits at the plate. On the mound John White (3-5) was handed the loss after throwing 5.0 innings with one strikeout and four earned runs.
In the first Zack Burling led off the game with a single and stole his team best 13th base of the year to move into scoring position. Burling came around to score after Dan Dispensa singled to left center to give the Leathernecks the early 1-0 lead.
The Mavericks answered in the bottom half of the first after Ryan Keele doubled and scored on a passed ball to even the score at 1-1.
Omaha then held Western scoreless in the next three innings while they put across six more runs to take the 7-1 lead. The Mavericks scored two runs in each inning on seven total hits while also capitalizing on two Leatherneck errors.
Western then poured in four runs on four hits in the sixth inning to get within one run of the Mavericks. After DeCook singled to lead off the inning, Tanner Glore hit his first career home run over the left field wall to make the score 7-4. Payton Jeffers drew a walk two batters later and scored after Burling hit his first career home run, an inside the park home run, which made the scored 7-6.
The Leathernecks could not cross the plate in the seventh inning and the Mavericks held on for the 7-6 win.
Game 2: Omaha 7, Western Illinois 4
Game two of the doubleheader saw the Mavericks score in the first six innings on their way to a 7-4 victory. With the win Omaha swept the Leathernecks this season in six meetings.
Western used six pitchers in the game with Tom Constand (4-4) getting the start and taking the loss. Constand threw 1.2 innings with one strikeout and two earned runs allowed.
Glore matched his career high with three hits in the game, highlighted by two doubles. Steve Kedroski picked up three RBI, two of which came after his second home run of the year. Jeffers also came into the game and finished with one hit and a career best two runs scored.
After the Mavericks scored one run in the first, the Leathernecks got on the board in the top of the second after Glore doubled and scored on a Manny Reyes RBI single.
Omaha put two more across in the bottom half of the second inning to make the score 3-1. In the third Jeffers crossed the plate for the first time after Kedroski singled to left field to make it a 3-2 game.
In the fifth Kedroski then took a 1-1 pitch over the right field wall for his third career home run to make it a 5-4 game. The Leathernecks would not produce another run however and the Mavericks put two more across to make it a 7-4 final.
Western is now 18-31 overall and 9-13 in conference play with four games remaining in the 2013 regular season. The Purple & Gold will travel to Rochester Hills, Mich. this weekend (May 16-18) for a four-game set with the Oakland Golden Grizzlies. Game one will be at 2 p.m. (CT) on Thursday.