Clarksville, Ark.--Behind junior left-handed pitcher Jed Kirby and a hot-hitting offensive performance from the Eagles, Ozarks perhaps turned in one of their best performances of the season with a 13-3 victory over Hardin-Simmons University of Friday afternoon.
Ozarks (9-3, 0-0) dominated from the start, taking advantage of three Cowboys errors in the first inning to score five runs on four hits. Robby Finnell and Brett Hays both collected an RBI in the first while Kirby held the visitors to just one run. Hardin-Simmons (5-3, 0-0) could do little at the plate as Kirby allowed only one more run during his time in the game. Kirby would finish the contest with six strikeouts in seven innings of work. Ozarks continued their offensive push in the third inning when they scored three runs. Todd Koch led off the inning with a single to left field. Hays followed with a bunt, and Chris Harrell advanced both runners with a sacrifice bunt. Hays and Koch both scored after Justin Brown reached base on an error. Brown would eventually score on another error to finish Ozarks’ scoring in the bottom of the inning and give the Eagles a 8-1 lead. In the fourth, Koch hit a two-run homer and Caleb Hilton singled in two runs to push the Eagles’ lead to 12-1. Brown homered in the sixth for their last score of the game. It was Brown’s third home run of the season. In all, the Eagles pounded out 16 hits in the win. The victory does not count as a conference win since Hardin-Simmons is in the West division. Koch went 4-for-5 with three runs and two RBI. Hilton, Hays, Brian Heckmann and Tyler Gideon each had two hits. Hilton and Brown both recorded two RBI. Kirby (3-1) cruised through seven innings, walking only one, to receive the win. The Eagles again host Hardin-Simmons tomorrow in one seven-inning game and one nine-inning game beginning at 12:00 p.m.