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Blue Raiders Pound Belmont, 14-2

Barrett, Kendrick, Campbell all collect four hits in victory

March 7, 2007 · Jo Jo Freeman
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Zach Barrett collected four hits and drove in five runs and Brett Smalley allowed just one run in five innings to pick up his first victory of the season in Middle Tennessee's 14-2 victory over Belmont on Wednesday.

The Blue Raiders (5-8) recorded a season-high 21 hits, with Barrett, Wayne Kendrick and Matt Campbell all with four hits in the victory. Adam Warren added three hits, while Kendrick, Warren, Taylor Dennis and Myles Ervin all scored twice in the contest.

Middle Tennessee scored in every inning from the second through the eighth, scoring four times in the second and three more in the third to take control of the game.

Smalley (1-2) worked five innings to pick up the victory, allowing six hits and one run. The righthander struck out three and walked three. Four Blue Raider relievers gave up just one hit and one run while striking out three.

Belmont starter Ben Meador (1-1) labored through 2.1 innings to take the loss, allowing five runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out two.

Matt Ray was hit to leadoff the game for the Blue Raiders and stole second. With one out Kendrick singled sharply to rightfield, putting runners on the corners, but Warren struck out and Blake McDade flied out to end the threat.

In the Middle Tennessee second, Barrett singled to center with one and stole second. Campbell then singled to right, but Barrett was gunned down at the plate by Belmont's Wilson Tucker. Campbell advanced to second on the throw and scored on a two-out single to center from Drew Robertson, giving the Blue Raiders a 1-0 lead.

Middle Tennessee added to the lead in the third after a leadoff single to left from Kendrick and an infield single by Warren. With one out Ervin walked to load the bases before a two-run double to rightcenter from Barrett, chasing Meador from the contest.

Campbell followed with an RBI single to right before Robertson laid down a beautiful squeeze bunt down the third base line, scoring Barrett for a 5-0 Raiders advantage.

The Bruins scored once in the bottom of the third when Brady Manifold singled with one out, Matt Reynolds was hit and Tucker singled RBI singled to center, plating Manifold.

But the Blue Raiders came back with three runs of their own in the fourth, starting with a one-out single by Kendrick. Warren then walked and McDade singled, loading the bases for Barrett, who cleared the bags with a double down the leftfield line.

Middle Tennessee scored twice more in the fifth. Campbell led off with a single but was erased on a doubleplay. Ray was then hit for the third time in the game, moved to second on a passed ball and scored on pinch hitter Justin Humphrey's single to rightcenter.

Kendrick then singled on the leftside and Warren hit a hard grounder to the leftside that was stopped by a diving Brandon McCall at third base. McCall's throw to first was not in time and was also in the dirt, allowing pinch runner Zach Hudson to score for a 10-1 Blue Raiders lead.

Belmont loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning on a walk to Manifold and consecutive one-out singles from Ben Petsch and Tucker. But Smalley worked out of the jam, inducing an inning-ending doubleplay from Kane Simmons.

In the sixth Ervin walked to leadoff, moved to second on a wild pitch, third on Barrett's fourth hit of the game and scored on Campbell's doubleplay ball.

Belmont's Derek Wiley led off the bottom of the sixth with a double of Barrett's glove at third base and later scored on a doubleplay off the bat of McCall.

The Blue Raiders added a run in the seventh after a two-out walk to Kendrick, ending his perfect day after going 4-for-4 with the free pass. Pinch runner Dennis went to third on a bloop single down the rightfield line from Warren and scored on McDade's single to right for a 12-2 Middle Tennessee advantage.

Dennis walked with one out in the Blue Raider ninth before Justin Jones hit his first career home run, a towering drove over the old message center in leftfield, for the final runs of the game.

The Blue Raiders begin Sun Belt Conference action this weekend with a three-game series at Troy starting Friday. Game times for the series are 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 1 p.m. on Sunday.

NOTES
Senior Wayne Kendrick tied his career-high with four hits in the game. Kendrick also had four hits earlier this season against Jacksonville State ... Freshman Kenneth Roberts made his first career appearance on the mound, tossing one inning.

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