ORU Captures 15th Straight Summit League Championship

Saturday, May 26th 2012, 10:04 pm
By: News On 6

Oral Roberts battled back in the second game of the day to top North Dakota State and win its 15th straight Summit League baseball Championship on Saturday afternoon.

No. 1 ORU faced the No. 3 Bison in a double-header that the Golden Eagles had to sweep in order to win the title and advance to the NCAA Tournament.

In the first matchup of the day, ORU rallied in the top of the ninth to score three runs, and come away with the 4-1 victory-- and game two would prove to be all about the rally as well.

Game two saw North Dakota State start out hot scoring two runs in the first inning of play.

The Golden Eagles didn't panic, instead choosing to dig deep and get the bats going in the fifth which produced four runs, enough to boost them over the Bison by a final of 4-3 to take the title and the automatic NCAA tournament bid.

The play of several Golden Eagles was superb in both games, earning a handful of players conference tournament honors. ORU placed six on the All-Tournament team, including Tournament MVP Drew Bowen, Brandon King, Jared Schlehuber, Joe Spring, Mike Torrence and Jose Trevino.

Drew Bowen pitched 10.1 innings over the course of two appearances for ORU. He posted one win and one save while striking out eight and allowing no earned runs.

Jose Trevino led the way for ORU in game one as he broke the 1-1 tie open in the top of the ninth with a line drive over the left field fence that put the Golden Eagles on top 4-1.

Alec Smith, who came into the game in relief in the eighth, got ORU to within one out of victory--earning the victory  on the mound in the process. Lars Liguori got the final out and his first save of the year. Mike Torrence left the game with no decision after going 7.2 innings giving up just one run on four hits.

North Dakota state responded to start game two as Nick Anderson belted a double down the right field line to score Tim Colwell and Wes Satzinger giving the Bison a 2-0 advantage in the first.

Joe Spring was instrumental in the win and after pitching four innings of scoreless relief he got some help from the ORU offense. Cam Schiller knocked a ball into right field that scored Goro from third and Domenico from second to knot the game 2-2.

Two batters later with one on and two outs, the Summit League Player of the Year Jared Schlehuber blasted his 13th home run of the season over the left centerfield wall giving the Golden Eagles a 4-2 lead.

The Bison added one in the top of the 7th, as Bowen surrendered a run with a wild pitch, allowing Tim Colwell to score. But the Summit League Pitcher of the Year came back to strike out Anderson and keep the score 4-3 in favor of the Golden Eagles.

After ORU missed opportunities to score in their next two innings, Bowen was left to face the top of NDSU's order in the 9th. The Golden Eagle ace retired Tim Colwell on a groundout, Nick Colwell on a fly out and Satzinger on a groundout to secure ORU's 15th straight conference title.

On the bump, Spring lasted for six crucial innings of work to earn the victory for his sixth of the season. The senior allowed just one unearned run while striking out three.

North Dakota State's Wentz took the loss to fall to 2-6, while Bowen earned his first save of the season after tossing the final 1.2 innings.

The 16 NCAA Tournament Regional sites will be announced Sunday afternoon while the full 64-team field will be revealed Monday.

2012 Summit League Baseball All-Tournament Team

Simon Anderson, NDSU
Drew Bowen, ORU (MVP)
Tim Colwell, NDSU
Jason Hager, OU
Nolan Jacoby, OU
Brandon King, ORU
Kyle Kingsley, NDSU
Kyle Kleinendorst, NDSU
Brad Royer, SUU
Tim Ryan, OU
Jared Schlehuber, ORU
Joe Spring, ORU
Mike Torrence, ORU
Jose Trevino, ORU