The Murray State baseball team dropped a hard-fought, back-and-forth affair Wednesday afternoon against Southern Illinois, losing 5-4 on the road to the Salukis. The game was cut short after seven complete innings due to heavy rain and even more forecasted inclement weather.
In the bottom of the eighth inning the game was first delayed due to heavy rain and was then ended shortly after that.
The Salukies (15-9-1) scored the first two runs of the game, bringing a single run across in both the bottom of the first and fourth innings to take a 2-0 advantage. MSU's best sustained inning was in the fifth when the Racers were able to score three runs to take a 3-2 lead.
A Jaron Robinson single got the Racers on the board as he brought home Jack Hranec from third. The very next at-bat, Cody Gilbert laid down a beautiful bunt to score Tyler Dixon from third as Dixon was able to beat the throw at the plate, tying the game at 2-2. Tyler Lawrence was able to give the Racers (12-16) their lone lead of the game when he came up two batters later and drew a bases-loaded walk that brought in Robinson.
SIU didn't waste much time however to retake the lead as the Salukis plated three runs in the bottom half of the inning, two of which were unearned due to MSU fielding miscues and went up 5-3. MSU cut the deficit back down to one run with an RBI single from Dixon in the sixth.
Dixon led the Racers at the plate going 2-for-2 with a walk, a run scored and an RBI. Five other Racers each came up with one hit each in the loss. Austin Dubsky took the loss as he pitched 4.1 innings, allowing four runs, two of which were earned, on seven hits. Dubsky also walked and struck-out one batter each. Brandon Hicks and Cody Maerz both made relief appearances in the game.
MSU returns to OVC action this weekend as Eastern Illinois comes to Reagan Field for three games. The three-game series begins Friday at 6 p.m.