Eureka Baseball Finishes First SLIAC Series Against No. 20 Spalding

/Spalding Athletics
/Spalding Athletics

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Eureka baseball team wrapped up its first St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference series of the 2021 season on Sunday.

Facing a No. 20 nationally-ranked Spalding team that was picked second in the SLIAC preseason poll, the Red Devils fell, 11-0 and 12-4.

Game 1: Spalding 11, Eureka 0

Spalding kept Eureka off the board by limiting the Red Devils to three hits and three walks, all without committing an error.

Kyle Christman (Peru, Ill./La Salle-Peru), Dean Moir (Coal City, Ill./Coal City) and Jimmy Peterson (Bloomington, Ill./Homeschooled) were responsible for EC's hits.

Moir led the second inning off with a single, and Braden Cross (Clinton, Ill./Clinton) drew a walk to put two on, but a double play and a fly-out ended the Red Devils' threat.

Two innings later, Christman singled with one out and reached second on a passed ball, but Spalding got back-to-back fly-outs to strand him there. Finally, in the seventh, Peterson doubled for the first time as a Red Devil, but he was stranded as well.

Spalding's Peyton Hood allowed one hit, one walk and struck out four in three innings to get the win for the Golden Eagles. Clay Burton came on after Hood and did the same, and Jamie Roustio conceded one hit and one walk in one inning of work.

Peterson made his first appearance on the mound, conceding two earned runs on three hits and one walk while striking out three in three innings.

Freshman Trevor Wignard (Decatur, Ill./Merdian) had a tough outing in his first collegiate start, allowing eight earned runs on nine hits in three innings.

Spalding finished with 11 hits, including two doubles and two triples.

Game 2: Spalding 12, Eureka 4

Eureka got the bats going more in the second game of the day and the fourth of the series. The Red Devils tallied four runs on seven hits and six walks.

Peterson and Karter Hostetler (Morton, Ill./Morton) each went 2-for-4 with an RBI. Hostetler doubled and scored a run.

Christman, Moir and Alex Barney (Sheldon, Ill./Milford) each had a hit as well.

Spalding put Eureka in a deep hole early, mashing nine runs on six hits in the first inning. The home team then tacked on two more in the third.

The Red Devils got on the board in the sixth inning when Spalding walked the bases loaded with zero outs. Garrett Wayne (Clinton, Ill./Clinton) grounded into a double play that scored Jelby Cheramie (Lockport, La./South Laforche).

In the seventh, Hostetler scored on a wild pitch and Peterson singled through the right side to score Barney. Kelton O'Grady (Camp Verde, Arizona/Camp Verde) tried to make it a three-run inning, but he was thrown out at home.

Eureka's final run of the weekend came on an RBI single up the middle by Hostetler in the eighth.

Gregory Cluskey (East Peoria, Ill./Metamora) was the starter and Ryan Bredeson (Washington, Ill./Washington), Jared Smith (Henry, Ill./Henry-Senachwine), Parker Brodine (Brimfield, Ill./Elmwood-Brimfield) and Barney all made pitching appearances in the series finale for the Red Devils. Smith threw two scoreless innings and had two strikeouts.

Coming Up

After the long weekend, the Red Devils will look to regroup before facing Rockford and Elmhurst twice on Friday and Saturday at the Corn Crib in Normal.