April 3, 2004
Johnson City, Tenn. -
WCU senior Todd Roper, who had two RBI in game one, went 4-for-4 with three RBI in game two to lead the Catamounts to an 8-4 victory over East Tennessee State to sweep a Saturday doubleheader at Cardinal Park. With the two wins today, Western Carolina improves to 14-16 overall and 4-7 in the Southern Conference, while ETSU falls to 13-18 and 4-10.
Western took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Roper had a one-out double to right and scored two batters later on an RBI double to center by Denver Edick.
East Tennessee State answered with two runs in the bottom of the first, making the score 2-1. With two outs, Caleb Moore singled and moved to second when Blake Church was hit by a pitch. Designated hitter Steven Calicutt sent a pitch to deep center, scoring Moore and Church with his two-run double.
The Cats regained the lead (3-2) in the top of the third, scoring two runs on three hits. Wayne Kilmer had a leadoff home run, clearing the right field wall for his second homer of the season. Roper singled to the pitcher and moved to second on the play thanks to a throwing error. Chris followed with an infield single, putting runners on the corners. Edick drove in his second run of the game with a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Roper.
The Bucs tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the third. Moore had a leadoff single and moved to second on a Calicutt single. After a fielder's choice ground out put runners on first and third, the Bucs' Shane Byrne stole second. When trying to throw out Byrne at second, the ball went into center field, allowing Moore to score on the play.
Western once again went back on top, 5-3, in the top of the fourth. Chad McKown had a leadoff single and moved to second on a ETSU fielding error, allowing Brandon Zollman to reach. After a fly out, Kilmer drove in McKown with a single to center. Zollman and Kilmer then moved up on a wild pitch. Roper, who had two sacrifice flies in the game one, delivered a sac fly to drive in Zollman on the play.
The Cats padded their advantage in the top of the seventh. Roper had a leadoff single and advanced to third on a Davis single. Edick then drove in his third run of the game with an RBI double, scoring Roper. In the bottom of the seventh, ETSU threatened, getting back-to-back singles to start the home half. WCU starter Brad Josey
got an out then gave way to Jeremy Ellenburg
, who walked the first batter he faced to load the bases. However, Ellenburg got back-to-back fly outs to escape unscathed.
Western pushed its advantage to 8-3 in the top of the eighth. McKown drew a leadoff walk. Pinch hitter Alex Gary then reached on an ETSU fielding error. After a ground ball moved McKown and Gary to third and second, respectively, Roper collected his fourth hit of the game with a two-run single to center.
The Bucs trimmed their deficit to four (8-4) with a single run in the bottom of the eighth. Stephen Douglas had a leadoff single, stole second and moved to third on a ground out. Josiah Glafenhein hit a fly ball to deep center, allowing Douglas to score.
Josey, like WCU's game one starter Caleb McConnell, had another impressive outing, improving to 2-2 on the season. The junior scattered eight hits over 6.1 innings with three runs (two earned), two walks and six strikeouts. Ellenburg, who picked up his first two career wins with a victory over Davidson Sunday and at Georgia State Wednesday, picked up his first career save Saturday, pitching the final 2.2 innings. He allowed one hit and one run with a walk and two strikeouts.
In addition to Roper's four hits, Kilmer, Davis and Edick had two hits each, with Edick driving in three and Kilmer plating two.
For the Bucs, the SoCon's leading hitter Moore went 2-for-4, as did Calicutt. Starting pitcher Tim Turner suffered the loss, falling to 4-5. He allowed 11 hits and six runs (four earned) with zero walks and five strikeouts.
Western Carolina and East Tennessee State will play the final game of their three-game set on Sunday at 1 pm. The game will be broadcast on Cullowhee's WWCU (90.5 FM) and on catamountsports.com.