CLARKSVILLE - Left fielder Cody Hudson drove a 0-2 pitch over the right-field wall and Austin Peay State University's baseball team won in walk-off fashion for the second consecutive day, downing Murray State, 13-12 in 10 innings, Sunday afternoon in Ohio Valley Conference action at Raymond C. Hand Park.
Austin Peay (22-13, 9-2 OVC) twice surrendered a lead in the contest. They grabbed a 4-2 lead in the first on third baseman Greg Bachman's three-run home run.
Murray State (18-19, 4-8) took the lead, 5-4, in the fifth on designated hitter Brandon Eggenschwiler's three-run home run. However, the Thoroughbreds were unable to extend the lead, leaving two men in scoring position.
First baseman Tyler Childress erased the Murray State lead with a leadoff home run in the fifth. Austin Peay then built another three-run lead in the sixth. Hudson chipped into the lead with a sacrifice fly. But it was catcher P.J. Torres' two-run home run that gave APSU an 8-5 advantage.
The Thoroughbreds seemingly gained all the game's momentum in the eighth, piecing together a six-run frame. Third baseman Brandon Elliott led off the inning with a home run. Austin Peay starter Casey Delgado left the game two batters later after he surrendered a single to center fielder Paul Ritzheimer.
Austin Peay turned to closer Tyler Rogers who could not get on track. He allowed a single, hit a batter, then permitted back-to-back RBI singles that tied the game and then gave Murray State a lead. Eggenschwiler then drove a ball to the wall in right center scoring two runs. After the second run scored, there was some commotion at home plate and Eggenschwiler attempted to take advantage but was caught out at second base by Torres.. Rogers got the next batter to fly out, ending the inning.
The Govs rallied again in the bottom of the eighth as Hankins and Harper each got aboard to start the inning. Bachman wasted no time tying the game again at 11-11 when he drove the first pitch he saw over the wall in right for his second three-run home run of the game.
Murray State saw its first two batters in the ninth ground out before Rogers hit Ritzheimer to keep the inning alive. The 'Breds made the Govs pay for the miscue as left fielder Ty Stetson drove a ball that got to the wall in right center. Ritzheimer scored but Austin Peay was able to end the inning when second baseman Jordan Hankins took the relay throw and went to third base to get the third out.
Austin Peay was down to its last out in the ninth with Clinard on first base after a fielder's choice. Hankins fell behind in the count and was facing a 1-2 count when he doubled into the gap in left center and the ball got to the wall. Clinard raced home with the tying run, setting up the extra-inning heroics.
Rogers (3-0) picked up the win for the second straight day. He surrendered his first earned runs since March 14, allowing five runs in 2.2 innings. Starter Casey Delgado allowed seven runs on 12 hits over 7.1 innings but did not factor into the decision.
Offensively, Bachman led the Govs with a 2-for-4, six RBI performance - his second six-RBI outing this season. Hankins and Harper also had two hits each while Hudson and Torres had two RBI apiece.
Murray State's Handlin (3-3) suffered the loss for the second consecutive day after allowing two runs on three hits in 1.1 innings.
Eggenschwiler led Murray State with a 2-for-5, five RBI outing. First baseman Mike Kozlowski and Elliott each had three hits. The 'Breds out hit the Govs, 17-11.
Austin Peay, which remained atop the OVC standings with the win, returns to action when it travels to Middle Tennessee for a 6 p.m., Wednesday contest.