Four-run inning downs baseball team


Karina Delgado

Senior Dustin Wilson pitches the ball Tuesday against Butler at Coaches Stadium. Wilson gave up two runs in one innng pitched in Eastern’s 6-3 loss to Butler. The Panthers host Illinois State in a make-up game at Coaches Stadium at 3 p.m.

Tom O'Connor, Baseball Reporter

Through four shutout innings, freshman Blake Malatestinic provided the momentum for a third win in the past four games.

But a four-run seventh inning for Butler, marked by three singles and a double, would syphon out this efficiency in a 6-3 Eastern loss in which neither team scored the first four innings.

Malatestinic, who came into the game with a 9.31 ERA, gave up one earned run, while allowing five hits and a walk in five innings.

“Any time you are putting zeroes up on the board that’s what you are supposed to do, and he kept us in it,” Anderson said. “That was going to be the last hitter he was going to face and he happened to hit a home run off of him.”

After the Panthers pulled Malatestinic in the wake of senior Tyler Houston’s home run, senior Dustin Wilson and senior Jake Haberer, two of five Eastern pitchers to take the mound Tuesday, gave up an assortment of five runs off six hits in the sixth and seventh.

“Defensive pitching has to show up big every game and the pitching got us through five,” Anderson said. “We just don’t have the offense to recover from it.”

A double from Butler sophomore Duncan Hewitt would become a goad to his teammates in the seventh.

Houston lined one up the middle, sending in Hewitt for the go-ahead run, before sophomore Harrison Freed and Connor Christman reached base on ensuing at-bats.

“That inning we didn’t pitch bad, but we walked the guys we could have gotten out to get to the better hitters,” Anderson said. “It’s just a bad way to play baseball.”

Butler sophomore Zach Jarosz and senior Gehrig Parker, who both walked that inning, have hit .185 and .290, respectively this season.

Redshirt junior Tyler Tesmond launched a ball over the right center field fence in the bottom of the fifth, pushing the Panthers ahead to take a 1-0 lead.

On the first pitch of the sixth inning, however, Houston hit a home run to left center, tying the game at one.

Positioned in ninth in the standings, Eastern holds a tenuous lead over Southern Illinois-Edwardsville in the Ohio Valley Conference and, if the season ended today, the Panthers would not be eligible for the tournament.

Up next, the Panthers play host to Illinois State Wednesday.

Tom O’Connor can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]