Clarksville, Ark. – University of the Ozarks (4-6, 2-4 ASC) senior Patrick Clifford was up to bat with two outs, two runners on, and the game tied 3-3 in the bottom of the ninth when he delivered a walk off three-run homer to secure a 6-3 victory over No. 23 Texas Dallas (12-2, 2-1 ASC) Saturday.
Watch Home Run Video Here: Patrick Clifford
The Eagles trailed 3-1 in the ninth, but they quickly began to rally. Zach Jones got on base after getting hit by a pitch and Jordan Jones went in to pinch run. Jordan Jones was quick to advance to second on a wild pitch and Crider delivered an RBI single up the middle to plate Jones. With two outs, Chase Edwards kept the inning alive with a single to left field that positioned runners on first and second. Next up was Josh Woolly, who evened the game 3-3 with an RBI single to center field. Clifford was next up to bat and ended the game in walk off fashion, drilling one over the fence in right center field.
Scoring for the second game of the doubleheader was kicked off by Texas-Dallas in the top of the second when they brought in two runs on one hit.
Starting pitcher Dalton Spurgeon quieted the Comets for the next three innings, holding them to just one hit and no runs from the second through the fifth inning. Ozarks offense then helped to narrow the gap in the bottom of the fifth. Crider started with a leadoff single through the right side and Edwards brought Crider home with an RBI double to left field.
Texas-Dallas scratched another run across to make it 3-1 in the top of the sixth and Spurgeon was taken out after 6.1 innings of work, allowing only two runs on five hits. Spurgeon's effort resulted in a no decision and Jacob Barker earned his first win of the year after 1.2 innings of work, giving up no hits or runs whatsoever. Edwards went 3-for-4 at the plate.
In game one, the Comets took advantage of a walk and an error by Ozarks to push a run across in the first, then added another run in the second to take a 2-0 lead through two complete innings.
Texas-Dallas did not let off the gas after that, hitting through their entire lineup in the top of the third to score four runs off of four hits. Ozarks was unable to answer offensively and Texas-Dallas came back even stronger in the top of the fourth, plating five runs off of a pair of three-run and two-run home runs to go up 11-0.
There was some life in the Eagles bats in the bottom of the fifth, with Edwards getting a single up the middle and Dakota Ebarb lining a single through the right side. Unfortunately, both hits ended with base runners getting thrown out at home plate.
Starting pitcher Brady Taylor suffered his first loss of the season for the Eagles and Texas Dallas starter Ruben Renteria improved his record to 3-0.
Ozarks will be back in action at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 7 hosting Central Baptist College.
By: Jackie Bacon