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Luna drives in 3, Govs hold off Racers

Robert Smith/

By Cody Bush

APSU Athletics Communications

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Austin Peay right fielder Skyler Luna had four hits and drove in three runs and Austin Peay used a big first inning to down Murray State, 12-10, and level the three-game Ohio Valley Conference series on Joe Maynard Field at Raymond C. Hand Park.

Austin Peay (6-8, 1-1 OVC) had its biggest first-inning offensive output of the year, scoring five runs thanks to some help from the Murray State defense. Twice ground balls found their way past the Racers outfield defense, and each time the result was a pair of APSU runs. First baseman Ty DeLancey and second baseman Malcolm Tipler, the sixth and seventh batters of the inning, were the only batters to record an RBI.

Murray State (8-7, 1-1) answered with two runs in the second, one scoring after an APSU error. However, Austin Peay scored a run in the second after third baseman Gino Avros doubles and then scored on Luna’s first double. The Govs extended their lead with two runs in the third, Avros’ second double of the game driving in DeLancey and Tipler for an 8-2 lead after three.

The Racers did not go away quietly and scored the game’s next five runs. Left fielder Ryan Perkins’ two-run home run was the big blow in a four-run fifth that trimmed Austin Peay’s lead to 8-7.

The two teams traded two-run frames in the sixth and seventh innings. Austin Peay scored twice in the sixth – a run coming courtesy center fielder Garrett Spain’s home run and a DeLancey single. Murray State responded with two runs in the seventh after an APSU error extended the inning. But Luna came to the rescue with a two-run double in the seventh to secure the victory.

Austin Peay starter Kyle Nunn went 3.1 innings and held the Racers to two runs on five hits but did not factor into the decision. Reliever Noah Miller (1-0), making his season’s first appearance, earned the win after allowing one unearned run in his two innings of work. Tucker Weaver followed with 2.1 innings of work, allowing two runs before closer Austin Carder recorded the game’s final out for his third save.

Murray State used six pitchers in the loss with starter Shane Burns (1-2) allowing six runs (four earned) on five hits in 1.2 innings and picking up the loss.

Luna recorded three doubles in his 4-for-5, three RBI outing. Avros went 2-for-3 with two RBI and scored twice. DeLancey posted a 3-for-5, two RBI outing as the Govs put together 15 hits in the win.

First baseman Wes Schad went 4-for-5 with two runs scored to pace Murray State’s 13-hit outing.

Austin Peay and Murray State conclude their three-game series with a 1 p.m. (CDT), Sunday contest at Hand Park.

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