KALAMAZOO, Mich. – The Western Michigan baseball team trailed 6-3 heading into the bottom of the seventh, but the Broncos closed the game out scoring five unanswered runs to beat Southeast Missouri State 8-6 in game three of the series at Hyames Field.
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER: @WMUBaseball
Nic Laio came up clutch for the Broncos, as the sophomore tossed the final 3.0 innings scoreless allowing three hits and one walk with three strikeouts. Laio entered in the seventh inning with the bases loaded and no outs and he earned the win to move to 3-1 this season. Jimmy Townsend-Chase, the starting pitcher for WMU, pitched 6.0 innings allowing four runs with a pair of strikeouts with a no decision.
There were some offensive fireworks early for the Broncos, who scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning off three hits and were helped by a walk and passed ball. Senior Nick Vogelmeier led the inning off with a walk and Connor Smith followed that with a single up the middle. After a passed ball, Tanner Allison delivered an RBI single to score Vogelmeier and Nate Grys followed that with a big two-run double to right center, making it a 3-0 WMU lead.
SEMO clawed their way back in the game, scoring two runs in the top of the second and one in the top of the fifth to tie it up at 3-3, while holding WMU scoreless for five straight innings after the three-run first.
The Redhawks had a big top of the seventh inning, where they scored three runs to take a 6-3 lead, but it was all Broncos from there on out. WMU came back to tie it in the bottom of the seventh inning with three runs of their own, making it 6-6.
In the seventh, Drew Devine drew a one-out walk and came in to score on Vogelmeier's RBI double that burned the center fielder. Later in the inning, Allison came up clutch with a two-run double to right center that scored Grant Miller and Vogelmeier and tied it up 6-6.
In the eighth inning, Alex Goodwin hit a huge double down the right field line to open the inning and put the pressure on SEMO early. On the next play, Jesse Forestell laid down a perfect bunt single and the SEMO catcher threw the ball away, scoring Goodwin and making it a 7-6 ball game. Later in the inning, Smith added a big insurance run on an RBI single to shortstop, making it 8-6.
Allison and Smith both had multi-hit games for WMU, as both team finished with eight hits. Allison went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBI, making it five RBI away from breaking the WMU single season record of 64. Smith went 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run while Vogelmeier went 1-for-3 with two runs and an RBI. Grys went 1-for-4 with a double and two RBI.
The Broncos head to Detroit on Tuesday, May 9 to face Michigan State at Comerica Park with first pitch slated for 6:35 p.m. WMU then heads to Oakland on Wednesday, May 10 at 3 p.m.