ROLLA, Mo. – After spotting Upper Iowa three runs in first inning in the first game of Monday's doubleheader at the S&T Ballpark, Missouri S&T broke out the offensive lumber as it rang up 29 runs over the balance of the afternoon to sweep the twinbill by scores of 16-8 and 13-3.
The Peacocks took that initial lead in game one, only to see S&T score two in the bottom half of the first, four in the second on a grand slam by Zach Bracken(Berthoud, CO/Berthoud) and three more in the third before busting the contest open with a seven-run sixth inning.
The Miners (6-9) got on the board in the first when Cameron Burk (Nacogdoches, TX/Cushing) drew a leadoff walk and later scored on a triple by Lucas Swindle (Weldon Spring, MO/Lutheran-St. Charles). Moments later, Swindle crossed the plate as Tim Lira (Granger, IN/Penn) reached on an error.
In the second, S&T loaded the bases on a one-out single by Drew Aldana (El Paso, TX/JM Hanks), a hit batter and a walk to Swindle with two outs before Bracken -- who came into the game to run for Lira after he had reached on the error – blasted a Zac Cain delivery over the fence in left center to give the Miners the lead.
The Miners added to their advantage in the third when Burk singled home a run and Swindle drove in two more with a bases-loaded single into right center.
Upper Iowa (2-4) trimmed the Miner lead to 9-5 with a run in the sixth, but S&T answered by putting seven runs on the scoreboard in the bottom half of the frame.
With one out, Kaleb Reid (Smithville, MO/Smithville) doubled and then stole third ahead of a Nathan Volkmann (Liberty, MO/Liberty) RBI single. Aldana and Burk followed with hits of their own, the latter scoring Volkmann, then Matt Knickerbocker (Bayfield, CO/Bayfield) singled to load the bases. Swindle drove in two more with a hit, then Bracken followed with his second home run of the game to complete the Miner scoring.
S&T starter Dalton Erger (Imperial, MO/Seckman) was the beneficiary of the offensive support, as he struck out seven and allowed four hits in his four innings of work.
Aldana and Swindle had three hits apiece among the 17 recorded by the Miners, while Bracken drove in seven runs and Swindle knocked in five in the opener.
Swindle had another big game in the nightcap, as he had three hits and three runs batted in while Knickerbocker had four hits in the game two triumph, a contest that saw the Miners score in every inning. The duo had a hand in the first run the Miners posted in the opening inning, as Knickerbocker came in to score after a hit by Swindle and a throwing error on the play.
Later in the inning, Bracken drove in a run with a hit and Reid brought home the third run with a sacrifice fly.
Swindle drove in a run in the second with an RBI double, then the Miners brought home two more in the third – after the Peacocks had cut the S&T lead to 4-3 in the third – on run-scoring hits off the bats of Aldana and Burk.
In the fourth, Matt Gruse (Neenah, WI/Neenah) was hit by a pitch and later scored on an RBI single by Reid, then the Miners scored twice in the fifth on a two-run single by Swindle.
The Miners finished their scoring in the sixth, starting with a leadoff single by Reid, who ended up a third a short time later on a stolen base and throwing error on the play. Reid would score on a hit by Zach Wiegand (Coppell, TX/Parish Episcopal), who then came home on a double by Aldana. Burk drove in the third run of the inning with a hit and Gruse brought home the final run with a sacrifice fly.
Anthony Garza (Belleviille, IL/Belleville East) went the distance on the mound for his first win of the season, allowing only five hits – three coming in UIU's three-run third – and fanning four.
The Miners return to action Saturday when they begin a three-game series against McKendree in Lebanon, Ill. Saturday's doubleheader will begin at noon.