Baseball team set for mid week game


Lauren McQueen

Junior Dustin Wilson pitches during the Panthers’ game against Murray State Saturday at Coaches Stadium. Wilson pitched three innings and picked up his first win of the season as the Panthers defeated the Racers, 7-5.

Maher Kawash, Baseball Reporter

What should be considered home sweet home for the Eastern baseball team has not been quite just that as a five-game home stand is in full swing.

The Panthers are back in action Tuesday afternoon for the first of two-straight single-game matchups this week.

It should serve as a time for Eastern to bounce back from a series loss this past weekend as a non-Division I opponent comes to town.

Robert Morris-Chicago is the opponent for Tuesday’s affair, and the Panthers send a veteran to the mound in an attempt to earn a pick-me-up victory.

Eastern (3-19) has not fared well among its first action this season, but the opposing talent has been elite.

The Panthers are not scheduled against many easy team, but that is why this single-game matchup serves as a lighter part of the schedule.

Robert Morris comes in at 11-14 and Allen’s opposition on the mound has not been announced.

As for Allen though, he is searching for any kind of luck on the mound with the search for a win still on.

Going deep into ballgames has been a clear problem to begin with as Allen has pitched more than three innings in a game just two times in seven appearances.

There has been reason for optimism as of late though as a one-run seven inning outing against Indiana State proved to be a possible turning point.

But following that appearance Allen had a quick hook from his coach Jason Anderson against Murray State.

Allen lasted just two innings after giving up two earned runs on three hits.

This time out he will face a Robert Morris that has had success putting the bat on the ball regardless of the competition.

Despite not facing Division I opponents all the time, Robert Morris boasts a team batting average just a tick under .300 on the year as well as holding a 5.92 ERA on the pitching staff.

With the thought of Eastern’s level of competition on the mind, their numbers have not stacked up as well among other conference opponents.

The Panthers rank dead last in team batting and pitching, while team fielding also ranks in the bottom half of the conference.

Despite the low conference rankings, Eastern has still seen improvement overall in its losses as of late.

The lineup is what has specifically improved in recent games as many guys have turned the corner in reaching base.

Dougie Parks continues to play a pivotal role in the batting order, and his four-game stretch last week resulted in a .500 batting average at the plate.

In that stretch, his ability to make it home made the difference, scoring a team-high four runs and eight hits.

Matt Albert has been a power dependency for the Panthers and his clutch hitting has earned him that.

Albert led the team with 10 runs batted in last week with nine coming against Murray State this past weekend.

He is also the only one on the team with multiple multi-homerun games.

Jimmy Govern continues to improve as well on the season and his play off the bench has provided a spark for Eastern.

Govern boasted an impressive .625 average in eight at-bats last week, but his best game came against Murray State.

He was able to finish 3-for-3 in game two of the series followed by a 2-for-4 performance in the series finale.

In that stretch, Govern also finished with one RBI and three runs scored.

While those guys and the Panthers try to continue their offensive success against Robert Morris, another non-conference opponent awaits just a day later.

Eastern will hit the second of a back-to-back with a single-game affair against Southern Illinois Wednesday.

Maher Kawash can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]