Offensive outburst leads Salukis past Eastern Illinois

SIU baseball got the bats going in its 10-2 win against Eastern Illinois on Tuesday.

The Salukis (20-13-1) were 11-22 with runners on base and 5-13 with runners in scoring position.

Sophomore second baseman Connor Kopach went 2-3 from the leadoff spot with four runs batted in and two runs scored. Production poured in the two and three spots too, with junior outfielders Dyllin Mucha and Jake Hand added two hits and two RBIs of their own. The three players totaled six of the team’s 16 hits and eight of the nine RBIs.


“I just tried to take the ball to the candy shop and got a good pitches over the plate to drive,” Kopach said. “We took some good at-bats tonight and we’re really starting to see the ball well.”

After no runs were scored in the first two frames, the Dawgs put four runs in the third.

“We did a lot of the little things well today,” said coach Ken Henderson. “Offensively, we laid some bunts down and put some pressure on them early and that’s what we need to keep doing.”

Senior Bryce Sablotny (3-3, 5.48 ERA) came away with the win, giving up two unearned runs and striking out five in 6 1/3 innings. Junior pitcher Chase Thurston (0-3 9.78 ERA) took the loss allowing six runs in 2 2/3 innings.

“Didn’t have my best stuff today but guys took good at-bats and put some runs on the board,” Sablotny said. “My breaking stuff worked really well and I got some guys to roll over and hit grounders and my defense did a nice job turning double plays.”

SIU scored four runs in the third, two in the sixth and four more in the seventh.

The Panthers (5-27) rallied for two runs in the seventh, but that would not be enough as the Salukis added four more in the bottom half of the inning.


The Salukis begin a three-game series against Dallas Baptist at 6:30 p.m. on Friday in Dallas.