CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO. – The Billikens (11-8) captured their fifth consecutive victory over Southeast Missouri State(13-7) with a 11-8 win in Cape Girardeau Tuesday night. Nick Vichio (1-0) was awarded his first collegiate win.
Danny Murphy was the top hitter for SLU, going 3-3 with four runs scored, a HR, two walks and an RBI. Jake Henson was also swinging a hot bat, going 2-5 with two runs, three RBIs and a pair of doubles.
Mike Vigliarolo had a double in the fifth inning, extending his hit streak to 11 games and his on-base streak to 19 games.
The Redhawks jumped out to an early lead, scoring once in the second and twice in the third.
The Billikens tied the ballgame in the top of the fourth. Henson ripped an RBI double to drive in Braxton Martinez and score SLU’s first run of the game. On the next pitch, Danny Brennan lifted a ball to deep center field, scoring Murphy from third and advancing Henson to third. Alec Solé drove in the tying run with a single to left.
The Billikens took the lead in the fifth, Henson hit another double, this one to right center, scoring two. Later in the frame, Josh Bunselmeyer looped a single to right field, scoring a pair. The Bills added another run in the inning on a sacrifice fly to right field, drawing the score to 8-3 in favor of Saint Louis.
The Redhawks battled back in the sixth, plating four runs including a three-run home run to cut the Billiken lead to 8-7.
Murphy led off the seventh for Saint Louis, and deposited the fourth pitch of the inning over the right field wall to give SLU an insurance run and bring the score to 9-7. SEMO threatened in the bottom of the inning, loading the bases with one out, but freshman Sam Nafziger entered the game and got an inning-ending double play.
Brennan added to the lead with a two-run shot to dead center field in the top of the ninth. It was the second home run of the season for Brennan and the third of his Billiken career.
The Redhawks opened the bottom of the ninth with a triple to center, scoring on an error. However, Matt Eckelman responded, striking out the next three batters to seal an 11-8 win for SLU.
Next up for SLU is a three game series at Rhode Island on March 21-23 to open Atlantic 10 Conference play.