ST. LOUIS - The Saint Louis Billikens (24-11) topped the Milwaukee Panthers (13-15) by a score of 4-2 Saturday afternoon at the Billiken Sports Center. Sophomore RHP Nick Bates gets the win and rises to 5-2 on the year. Senior RHP Marco Mejia gets the one out save, his fourth of the year. Mejia is now fifth on the single-season saves list.
The next five innings were all shutout frames, with Bates allowing only four hits over the 15 outs.
In the bottom of the seventh, senior Alex Kelly ripped a two-run double to cap an excellent day at the plate. Kelly was one-for-three with two RBIs, a run scored and was hit by a pitch. He later stole third for his fifth swipe of the season.
Entering the ninth with a three-run lead, Billiken freshman Matt Eckelman had thrown two hitless innings and remained in the game for the save. A leadoff double, followed by an RBI single cut the Billiken lead to 4-2. Eckelman struggled, but managed to record two outs in the frame. Mejia entered with runners at first and second. He walked the first batter to load the bases with two away and the go-ahead run on first base. Mejia displayed senior composure and struck out the final batter to seal his fourth save of the season.
Mejia is now tied with six other Billikens for the fifth-most saves in a single season at Saint Louis. He is also tied with three for eighth on the career save list with four.
The third and final game of the series will take place tomorrow at noon at the Billiken Sports Center.