ST. LOUIS - Danny Murphy ripped a one-out solo home run in the bottom of the ninth, powering the Billikens to a 7-6 win over Richmond in game one of a three-game series. Matt Eckelman (5-1) picked up the win. Saint Louis rises to 21-14 overall and 9-3 in Atlantic 10 play.
Richmond jumped out to an early lead after scoring in the first inning. Saint Louis took the lead in the bottom of the second with two runs giving SLU a 2-1 lead.
The Bills ran into some trouble in the seventh as the Spiders hit a three-run home run to take a 4-3 lead. Solé responded in the bottom of the frame, singling to left and scoring Brennan from second. Through seven innings, the score was tied at 4-4.
Saint Louis took a late lead in the eighth on a pair of RBI singles from Jake Henson and Brennan.
Richmond faced a two-run deficit in the ninth, but quickly erased it with two runs of their own in the top of the inning.
In the bottom of the ninth, Murphy came to the plate with one out in a 6-6 tie game. In his at bat, the second pitch he saw was laced deep to right center, clearing the wall and giving SLU a 7-6 win. It was Murphy's fourth long ball of the year.
The Billiken bats were hot all night, as they tallied 15 hits, one hit shy of a season high. Murphy was the top performer at the plate. He was 3-4, falling a double shy of the cycle. Solé also collected three hits, scoring a run and two RBIs. Brennan was 3-5 with two runs and an RBI.
On the hill, starting pitcher Nick Bates had a strong showing, throwing 6.1 innings with four hits, one walk and matching a career-high with 10 strikeouts.
The Billikens will host the Spiders for game two of the series tomorrow April 18 at 6 p.m. at the Billiken Sports Center. Junior RHP James Norwood will get the ball for SLU.