Depleted staff takes mound against Tigers

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Redhawks baseball team faces Memphis without any of its top pitchers after 12-inning marathon.

Coming off perhaps as amazing a win as Mark Hogan has had in his 13 seasons as Southeast Missouri State's baseball coach, the Redhawks will now get ready for five home games this week.

First up is a two-game nonconference series with Memphis, featuring a 6 p.m. contest today and a 4 p.m. start Wednesday.

The Redhawks rallied from a 10-2, seventh-inning deficit Sunday to post a 16-14, 12-inning victory at Austin Peay that salvaged one win in a three-game Ohio Valley Conference series.

Southeast, 25-15 overall, sits in second place in OVC play at 10-5. The Redhawks trail league-leading Jacksonville State by one game.

"I can't ever remember having a similar win, where we're down by that amount that late in the game," Hogan said of Sunday's triumph. "I'm sure I would remember something like that if it happened before.

"It just showed a lot of character on the part of our guys, to hang in there and not quit even though things looked really bad. It was just a great win for our program."

Before turning their attention to an OVC series with visiting Eastern Illinois this weekend, the Redhawks will take on Memphis with a strapped pitching staff.

"It will be interesting from a pitching standpoint," Hogan said of facing Memphis. "But we'll be able to get a look at some different guys."

Memphis is 25-16 overall and in third place in Conference USA at 9-6.

The Tigers beat Southeast 5-1 and 15-1 last year in Memphis. They lead the all-time series between the programs 25-17.

The Tigers were ranked as high as 35th nationally three weeks ago in the USA Today Coaches Poll.

Memphis is 4-4 against OVC opponents this season, losing twice to both Samford and Murray State, while beating Austin Peay twice, along with Eastern Illinois and Tennessee-Martin once apiece.

The Tigers are led offensively by senior second baseman Bill Moss, who is tied for the C-USA lead in home runs with 10.

"We'll have our hands full with a really good Memphis club," Hogan said.

Softball player honored

Southeast junior Michelle Summers was been named the OVC co-player of the week for softball Monday.

Summers hit .500 with a 1.056 slugging percentage and two home runs last week as the Redhawks went 4-1.

Summers, Southeast's second-leading hitter at .339, also ranks second on the Redhawks in homers with nine.

Last year, Summers tied Southeast's single-season home run record by blasting 11, and she holds the school's career homer mark with 30.

Freshman Stacia Dopudja has also matched Southeast's single-season homer mark by belting 11 so far this year. She also leads the Redhawks with a .344 average and 36 RBIs.

Southeast (15-25, 7-13 OVC) has a 3 p.m. nonconference home doubleheader today against Memphis (27-21, 4-12 C-USA).

Memphis beat visiting Southeast 2-1 in nine innings on Feb. 23 in the Redhawks' season opener.

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