Kolkmeyer's Slam helps Lions split a double-header with Washburn

Joplin, Mo. -- A grand slam from Dane Kolkmeyer in the sixth inning of game two was part of six Lions runs and helped Southern to an 11-6 win and a split in the double-header today against visiting Washburn. The Lions dropped the opener 8-7 in extra innings. 

Southern (14-14, 10-12 MIAA) scored a run in the first inning of game two when Zach Campbell drove in Kolkmeyer with a single. The Lions added three unearned runs in the third to go up 4-1 and after Washburn scored two in the fifth, Southern got an RBI single from Ben Millard, scoring CJ Matthews to put the Lions back up 5-3 after five innings. 

Washburn (8-14, 8-11 MIAA) scored two more runs in the top of the sixth to tie the game back at five before the Lions went to work. Southern started the sixth with a double from Patrick Deao. After an out, both Fernando Lugo and Jim Gilkerson were hit with a pitch to load the bases. It looked as if Harrison Gerber would be the third batter in a row hit with a pitch, but he was called back as the umpire said he turned into it. Gerber, instead, singled to right, scoring Deao to put the Lions on top 6-5. Matthews was then hit by a pitch, the third Lion in the inning, driving in Lugo with the go-ahead run, before Dane Kolkmeyer cleared the bases with a long shot to left field. 

A home run from Washburn's Tyler Bean to lead off the seventh would be all the Ichabods would add in the final frame. 

David Reese started for Southern in game two and went four innings, allowing three runs. Bo Bergen pitched an inning and Ryan Taylor faced a pair of hitters before Michael Mudd came in and threw the final two innings for his second win of the year. 

Kolkmeyer went 4-4 in the game with five RBIs and three runs scored. Gerber had two hits with two runs scored and an RBI, while Millard was 2-2 and Gilkerson scored twice. 

Game one went extra innings. The Lions scored a run in the second on a sac fly from Cullen Baxter scoring Dallas Burke. The Lions added three more in the third on RBI singles from Kolkmeyer and Jesse Kinzey. After a Lions' run in the fourth on a Deao homer to right, Washburn scored three runs in the top of the fifth to go up 6-5. 

Southern had a chance to go ahead in the bottom half of the inning, and scored the tying run on a Baxter ground out scoring Kinzey. Matthews then singled to right field and Burke was out at home trying to score the go-ahead run. 

Neither team scored in the sixth or seventh innings, forcing extras when Washburn went ahead with a pair of runs in the top of the eighth. The Lions threatened in the bottom half of the inning. Matthews singled to start the inning and a double from Deao put runners on second and third with no one out. Gerber drove an 0-1 pitch to deep right field, but not deep enough, however Matthews scored on the play. That would be all the Lions would get in the inning, however as Washburn pitcher Brett Ash retired the next two hitters to pick up his second win of the year. 

Kolkmeyer was 3-5 in the game with a run and an RBI, while Burke went 3-4 with a run scored. Baxter drove in two, while Kinzey scored a run and drove in a pair. Both Matthews and Deao had a pair of hits each. 

Ryan Wheat started for Southern and went four innings, striking out five. Austin Brown threw three innings and took the loss. 

The Lions have made a change in their mid-week schedule as both Southern and Northeastern State have agreed to cancel their game Tuesday at Joe Becker. Southern's next action will be a four-game series next weekend at Emporia State with games on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. ESU is ranked first nationally in one poll and second in another.