Baseball travels to MIAA No. 2 Emporia

Sitting at sixth place in the MIAA, the Missouri Southern baseball Lions’ have a couple of tests left on their schedule.

This weekend, they will travel to Emporia State University for a four-game set. The Hornets have the second-best record in conference with an overall mark of 29-8.

“I think we definitely know we’ve got our work cut out for us,” Head Coach Bryce Darnell said. “You know, winning definitely makes you feel better about yourself and we’ve won, you know, gone on a pretty good streak, winning I don’t know how many of our last how many but, we’ve had a good couple weeks and we hope that carries over.”

After a home matchup against non-conference opponent Central Oklahoma on Tuesday, Southern will take on the MIAA’s No. 4 team in the Fort Hays State University Tigers for four games in Hays, KS from April 23-25.

Finally, the Lions end their regular-season slate with a homestand against Southwest Baptist University from April 30 to May 1.

 Southern will go into the crucial series against Emporia coming off a string of six wins in their last eight games.

Tuesday, the Lions were roughed up by the Northeastern State University Riverhawks in a single-game home matchup.

Lions’ workhorse CJ Maffei was touched for eight earned runs in just three and one-third innings, and the bullpen couldn’t stop the bleeding, giving up 10 more earned runs between four relievers.

Southern did manage to scratch across seven runs of its own, however, thanks to the continued production of Joe Lincoln, Jacob Taylor and Michael Zurmehly who each had a least a hit and an RBI on the night.

Last Saturday, the Lions hosted Park University for a one-game tilt and used 16 hits to get the victory in a 14-10 slugfest.

Lincoln had three of those hits and knocked in three runs, including a third-inning homer for his fifth of the year.

Zak Porath also went 2-2 and had three RBI’s of his own, swatting his third homerun of the year in the seventh inning. Carter Lance threw five and two-thirds shutout innings in relief to pick up the win.

“It was nice to play a game on a nice day like that, a game that wasn’t initially scheduled,” Darnell said. “But it was a good day, we got some kids some innings and it was a good day.”

Looking at the challenge ahead of his team in the series against Emporia, Darnell has great respect for the Hornets, but also believes his team is more than capable of competing with them.

“I just think Emporia, they don’t have any weaknesses,” he said. “They come at you, from an offensive standpoint they don’t really have any weaknesses, up and down their lineup. They’re just a solid club; they’re coached well. They don’t do things to hurt themselves.