Feltner and Preece Go Back-to-Back as Baseball Eagles Take Opener Over Austin Peay
In the opening game of its final regular season series, the Morehead State baseball team took down Austin Peay in Clarksville 4-2 Thursday to inch closer to securing a top four seed in the OVC Tournament next week. The win marked the third straight victory for the Eagles, giving them a two-game lead over Austin Peay in the OVC.
Grant Herron (W, 4-3) took the ball for Morehead State in the opener and pitched brilliantly across five innings. Herron allowed only one run on five hits and two walks, striking out five in his fourth win of the season. Double plays proved to be his best friend in the win, as the Eagles turned three while Herron was in the game.
In the first inning, Ryley Preece, Jackson Feltner, and Alex Jacobs drew walks, and Nick Gooden's sacrifice fly put the Eagles on top early 1-0. Austin Peay got a run back in the fourth, but it didn't take long for the Eagles to regain the lead and more. Preece (33 games) and Jacobs (49 games) both extended their on-base streaks in the contest, with Jacobs now only one game shy of the school record.
In the fifth, Bryson Stripling led off with a single and then scored on a two-run blast from Ryley Preece (2-3, HR, 3B, 2 BB), who has raked in his four career games in Clarksville. His 13th homer of the season marked his fifth career home run vs. Austin Peay, and put the Eagles up 3-1. Moments later, Jackson Feltner (1-2, HR, 2 BB) worked a full count and launched a 433-foot home run to left-center field to give the Eagles a 4-1 lead. Feltner now has 16 home runs on the season, the most by an Eagle since Trevor Snyder (18) in 2018.
Joe Rotkis came on for Grant Herron in the sixth inning and threw a scoreless frame, stranding a runner at third base after allowing a leadoff single. Jarrett Miller came on in the seventh and allowed a run, but forced the tying run to groundout and end the inning.
John Bakke (SV, 8) came on for Miller with a man on in the eighth inning and walked two Govs to load the bases with no outs, but an infield fly and back-to-back strikeouts stranded three to keep the score 4-2. Bakke came back out in the ninth and needed only six pitches to slam the door on any hope of a comeback to record his eighth save of the season.
With the win, Morehead State moved to 25-26 on the season, and 12-10 in OVC play. The Eagles will look to win the series Friday, with another 7:00 p.m. ET start scheduled for game two of the series.
By Hunter Hurst, Morehead State Athletic Media Relations