Clarksville, Ark.-Michael Prusator's two-run double in the bottom of the seventh broke a 2-2 tie and lifted the Eagles to a season-opening 4-2 win over Hendrix College Sunday in front of a large opening season crowd.
It took a while for the Eagles’ offense to get going as Hendrix (0-1) had a no-hitter through six and one-third innings. With the score tied 2-2, Kurt Shemanske broke up the no-hitter in the seventh with a clean single to center field. Drew Clark followed with another single, this one laced to right field. Following a Hendrix pitching change, Mitchell Powers worked a walk to load the bases for Prusator. Prusator promptly ripped a double to center field to score the game-winning runs.
Freshman starter Sam Brownwood was impressive in his college debut on the mound, throwing five shutout innings. The right-hander retired the first three batters he faced and then forced a groundout to end the second inning after the Warriors had runners at second and third. Brownwood allowed just three hits while striking out two.
Powers broke a scoreless game with a bases loaded walk to bring in Brandon Brewer in the fifth. A wild pitch allowed Shemanske to score from third and gave Ozarks (1-0) a 2-0 lead. Hendrix eventually tied it in the top of the seventh before Prusator gave the lead back to Ozarks for good.
After Hendrix evened the score with a run in the seventh, Ozarks inserted freshman right-hander Tyler Erickson to halt the rally. Erickson delivered, forcing a fly out and a ground out to end the threat. Erickson didn’t allow a run in the eighth and then ran into a bit of trouble in the top of the ninth. Hendrix opened the ninth with a single, but Erickson quickly erased the threat with a strikeout and a pop out. The Warriors would get one more base runner, but Erickson closed the door with a strike out to receive his first collegiate win. He went two and two-third innings and fanned three.
Shemanske finished 2-for-3 for Ozarks and scored twice. Prusator went 1-for-3 with 2 RBI.
The Eagles will travel to Jackson, Mississippi to play in the Wilson/DeMarini Classic February 4-6.