MACOMB, Ill. - The Western Illinois baseball program handed Oral Roberts its first Summit League loss of the season on Friday, 3-2. The game was called in the seventh inning due to darkness after a 2:03 rain delay extended the game into the night.
Dan Russell (4-3) toed the rubber for for the Leathernecks and went the distance and only allowed three hits and gave up no earned runs.
Tom Lilja started the second inning with a single and Austin Cowen reached on an error on the Golden Eagle shortstop. Danny Marcuzzo singled to center field to plate Lilja. Anthony Kaskadden dropped down a sacrifice bunt to the pitcher and Cowen was able to cross home for the second run of the inning.
Oral Roberts answered with two of their own as a throwing error started the inning. Another error charged to the Leathernecks allowed a run to score. Brandon King lifted a ball into center field for a sacrifice fly to tie the game at two.
The Purple & Gold collected the eventual game-winning run in the bottom of the fifth inning. Ryan Cowhey wore one to start the inning. Dan Dispensa doubled down the right field line. Matt Igara did his job and flew out to left field to allow Cowhey to score on the sacrifice fly.
The rain delay started in the middle of the seventh inning at 5 p.m. and lasted until 7:03 p.m. After the delay the Leathernecks came to the plate in the bottom of the frame and went down in order.
The umpires got together and decided to call the game due to darkness and awarded the victory to the Purple Army.
Dispensa led the way for Western with a 2-for-3 performance. John Koszulinski, Marcuzzo and Kaskadden all drove in runs for the Leathernecks.
The series will continue on Saturday with a doubleheader beginning at noon. Be sure to check out the radio broadcast and live stream on Rocky Vision beginning at 11:55 a.m.