Wireman wins OVC pitcher of week

Sean Hastings, Sports Editor

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Senior pitcher Jessica Wireman picked up her second OVC Pitcher of the Week honor of the year for her performance against Belmont and Tennessee State last weekend.

It also marked the seventh of her career.

Wireman went 2-0 over the weekend with a save and struck out 18 batters over the four games. She also finished off with an ERA of 0.79.

The Panthers started OVC play 4-0 after sweeping the Bruins and Tigers. She picked up both wins against Belmont after starting and pitching all nine innings in the first game.

The Panthers came away with a 3-2 win in nine innings and she recorded eight strikeouts. She gave up just two earned runs on eight hits. The Bruins hit the ball in the air, as 15 of their 17 outs besides strikeouts were fly outs.

In the second game’s slugfest where the Eastern won 11-8, Wireman picked up the save closing out the final 1.2 innings. She gave up just one hit and struck out three batters.

Senior Michelle Rogers started that game, but struggled and gave up six runs in two innings. Freshman Valerie Thompson gave up just two runs in 3.1 to set up Wireman for her sixth save of the season.

Wireman picked up the complete game win over Tennessee State in the first game on Sunday, striking out seven.

Eastern was set to play Butler Tuesday at Williams field for its home opener, but it was moved to Wednesday due to rain on Monday and Tuesday morning.

The Panthers’ first OVC home game is Friday against Southeast Missouri, when three of the OVC’s win leaders will go at it. Rogers lead the OVC with 11 wins and Southeast Missouri’s Madeline Krumrey and Wireman each have 10 wins.

Eastern’s game against Butler on Wednesday is the first of an eight-game home stand. The home stand will last two weeks as four of those games will be played April 7-8.

The Panthers are no strangers to early OVC season rainouts as last year’s first four were canceled due to rain. Three games following the first weekend were also canceled in 2017.

Wednesday’s make-up game is set to start at 4 p.m. Eastern beat Butler 2-0 last season, and Wireman picked up the win in that one and Rogers earned the save.

Sean Hastings can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]