CLARKSVILLE - Sophomore Rolando Gautier's grand slam was the first of three home runs and sophomore Ryan Quick bounced back from a rough first inning as Austin Peay State University's baseball team won its fifth straight game, 10-2, against UT Martin in Ohio Valley Conference action, Friday night, at Raymond C. Hand Park.
Quick ran into first-inning trouble after retiring the first two UT Martin (8-17, 2-2 OVC) batters. But he surrendered a solo home run to Skyhawk center fielder Jordan Owen. Quick then allowed a single to first baseman Phil Sorensen before third basemanrifled an RBI single off the wall to score the Skyhawks second run.
That was all Quick would surrender as he locked in from that point. He retired the next nine batters in order before allowing a two-out walk in the fourth. Quick also surrendered a one-out walk in the fifth before retiring the next eight batters. He would walk his third batter to start the eighth and, after a strikeout, gave up a single to right fielder Matt Milligan that ended his outing.
Meanwhile, the Govs offense struggled early again as UTM starter Alex Mills held the Govs scoreless through three innings. Austin Peay broke through in the fourth, loading the bases in front of Gautier who took the first pitch he saw and launched it over the wall in right for a grand slam and a 4-2 Govs lead.
Austin Peay (16-10, 4-0 OVC) added a run in the fifth as left fielder Cody Hudson led off the inning with a triple and scored on a Mills wild pitch. The Govs broke the game open in the eighth as second baseman Jordan Hankins hit a two-run home run to right and pinch hitter Tyler Childress hit a two-run home run to deep center field. Centerfielder Michael Blanchard followed with a double and scored on a UTM error later in the inning.
Quick (3-0) picked up the win after striking out a career-high nine batters over 7.1 innings while allowing two runs on four hits. Reliever Tyler Rogers threw one pitch, which resulted in an eighth-inning ending double play. Zane Leffew retired the side in order in the ninth.
Nine Governors recorded a hit in an 11-hit outing. Catcher P.J. Torres and Blanchard each had two hits.
Mills (2-1) was tagged for the loss after allowing seven runs on eight hits over seven-plus innings. Four Skyhawks recorded a hit each as the Govs pitchers limited them to four hits total.
Austin Peay and UT Martin continue their three-game OVC series with a 2 p.m., Saturday contest at Raymond C. Hand Park. Austin Peay junior Casey Delgado (2-2, 8.59 ERA) will face UT Martin senior Willie Frederick (1-3, 4.61 ERA).