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Central Missouri rolling at Astros in Action tourney

Oropeza paces Mules' 16-hit attack against Arkansas Tech

HOUSTON -- After opening the Astros in Action Division II Invitational with a loss, fourth-ranked Central Missouri is rolling. Especially with the bats.

Designated hitter John Oropeza paced a 16-hit attack with four hits on Sunday, and the Mules defeated Arkansas Tech, 10-4, to win for the second consecutive night at Minute Maid Park. Oropeza went 4-for-4 with a walk. Samuel Domingue had three hits, and Dusty Maas, Hunter Johnson, Seth Wheeler and Brad Wilson added two hits each, with Wilson contributing three RBIs.

Thomas Biocic collected two hits and three RBIs for Arkansas Tech (0-3). Starter Jake Bell (0-1) took the loss, lasting only 2 2/3 innings.

Reliever Devon Brogan (1-0) got the win for Central Missouri (2-1), which opened the eight-team tournament with a 4-1 loss to Texas A&M-Kingsville on Friday, followed by Saturday's 8-1 win over Abilene Christian.

As for Abilene Christian, the team's first five batters of the game scored, and from there it was pretty much clear sailing for the Wildcats, who overpowered Incarnate Word, 12-5, on Sunday.

The Wildcats scored six runs in the top of the first inning off Alex Shaffer (0-1), who lasted one-third of an inning and was charged with all six runs. The deficit proved too much for the Cardinals to overcome.

The Cardinals (2-1) were the last team to lose in the eight-team invitational. Sunday was the third day of the four-day tournament, but Incarnate Word and Tarleton State concluded their scheduled games Sunday.

Seth Spivey, who had six plate appearances, had a team-high three hits and a walk for Abilene Christian (2-1), which amassed 14 hits. Tyler Eager, Cameron Bonifant and Travis Schuetze had two hits each for the Wildcats. Schuetze, Kyle Giusti and Rodge Macy had two RBIs each.

Aaron Lambrix (1-0) got the win in relief of starter Carter Hahn, who allowed a fifth-inning home run to Adam Pena -- a 382-foot blast to right-center -- among his 122 pitches. Lambrix did not allow a run in 4 1/3 innings.

Tarleton State 2, Emporia State 0: Tarleton State left-hander Matt Buckmaster (1-0) breezed through 6 2/3 innings in the Day 3 opener, limiting the Hornets to three hits while striking out seven and walking three.

Tarleton State (2-1) scored in the third with Alvaro Moreno, who had two of the Texans' eight hits, singling home Rustin Thomas off Hornets starter Garrett Bane (0-1). The Texans added a run in the sixth when Colten Boothe scored from third, as Evan Robinson was hit by a Kevin Shaffer pitch with the bases loaded.

Emporia State (1-2) could muster only five hits -- with Eric Dawson (three) and Skylar Angood (two) accounting for all of them.

Texas A&M-Kingsville 16, Arkansas-Monticello 9: Designated hitter Bronson Gilliam put on a power display Sunday at Minute Maid Park, crushing two home runs among his four hits for Arkansas-Monticello. But it wasn't enough as the Boll Weevils lost to Texas A&M-Kingsville 16-9.

Both of the switch hitter's home runs off Javelinas starting pitcher Cody Williams were from the left side. Gilliam's third-inning homer cleared the right-field wall and his fifth-inning homer landed in the Astros bullpen, right of center field, close to a 400-foot shot. The 6-foot-4, 245-pound Gilliam singled in the eighth inning batting right-handed.

The Javelinas (2-1) countered with 21 hits, including home runs from Travis Laird and Taylor Taska, who was 4-for-6 with three RBIs. Teammate Matt Perez had four hits and scored three runs.

Denver Diefenbach (1-0) got the win in relief. Jeff Harvil (0-1) took the loss for the Boll Weevils (1-2).

Richard Dean is a contributor to
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