Copeland Tosses Complete Game in 6-1 VictoryMarch 15, 2005 · MT Media Relations
Copeland (2-0) gave up just three hits and struck out one, tossing the second straight complete game for the staff after Matt Scott's complete-game shutout on Sunday. The lefthander walked three and faced the minimum in six innings.
Southern Illinois (10-7) starter Bryan Rueger was just as impressive until the Blue Raiders were finally able to get some runs in the sixth. Middle Tennessee collected 10 hits in the contest, the 10th time this season with double-digit hits.
Both starting pitchers had little trouble in the early innings until Middle Tennessee scratched across a run in the fourth.
McKenry's double down the leftfield line started the inning, and he went to third on a wild pitch. Jeff Beachum's groundout scored the run for a 1-0 lead.
The Blue Raiders (8-5) used a prevailing wind to leftfield to score three times in the sixth, finally getting to Rueger in a pitcher's dual.
Beachum singled to center with one out before Chase Eakes hit an 0-2 pitch off his shoetops that just cleared the leftfield wall for a 3-0 lead. Josh Archer then singled, stole second and scored on an error by SIU third baseman Matt Brewer.
Middle Tennessee finally solved Rueger in the seventh, with McKenry belting a home run into the football stadium and Beachum lining a homer over the leftfield wall, chasing Rueger with two outs in the inning and a 6-0 Blue Raider lead.
The Salukis scratched across a run in the eighth against Copeland, using a leadoff walk, an error and a single to load the bases. Kevin Koski plated the run with a sacrifice fly.
McKenry, Beachum and Eric McNamee all had two hits, while McKenry and Beachum both scored twice. The Salukis managed just three singles, one each in the third, fifth and eighth innings.
Rueger gave up six runs, five earned, on nine hits and struck out seven.
The two teams play again Wednesday at 3 p.m. before Middle Tennessee starts a seven-game road swing with a three-game series at Southwest Missouri State this weekend.
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
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