Kearney, Neb. – Missouri Western State cleanup hitter Levi Schreiner had four hits and four RBI’s to help the Griffons pull away from Nebraska-Kearney, 16-6 (8 innings), Saturday night in St. Joseph.
The game, which began at 7 p.m., was delayed briefly due to lightening. UNK falls to 28-21 (21-14) while the Griffs improve to 27-22 (19-16). With Pittsburg State sweeping a doubleheader Saturday at Southwest Baptist, the Lopers will be the fifth seed in next week’s eight-team MIAA Tournament.
Kearney erased a 5-4 deficit with a two-run sixth. However, Mo West struck for seven in its half of the sixth and then tacked on four more runs to evoke the 10-run rule.
An RBI double by junior left fielder Brandon Hernandez (San Diego, Calif.) and a sac fly from sophomore first baseman Ty Roseberry (Kearney) gave UNK its only lead of the night at 6-5. Earlier in the game, Roseberry and senior second baseman Scott Platt (Longmont, Colo.) had RBI singles.
The Griffs recorded 10 of its 14 hits between the sixth and eighth innings. They also drew four walks and were hit three times during this stretch. Schreiner (4 for 5, three runs) led the way with leadoff hitter Fahd Shakeel (3 for 6, one run & three RBI’s) and six-hole hitter Maurice Bruce (2 for 5, one run & three RBI’s) also having big nights.
Schreiner, a right fielder and first baseman, hit a two-run homer in the first, Bruce had a three-run double in the fourth and the giant sixth featured five hits. They included two-run singles by Schreiner and pinch hitter Ryan Fisher.
For UNK, junior right fielder Alex Achtermann (Denver) went 3 for 4 with two runs from the three-hole while leadoff hitter and center fielder Brett Young (Lodi, Calif.) was 2 for 5 with two runs scored. Finally, two-time reigning MIAA Pitcher of the Week Josh Cooper (Roseville, Calif.) allowed four earned on four hits and three walks in five full innings. He also had five K’s, giving him 28 in his last 28.0 innings pitched .The series finale is set for Sunday at 1p.m.