Oral Roberts Wins Mid-Con Baseball Tournament
Saturday, May 29, 2004



Shreveport — For the seventh consecutive year, the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles needed only one game on the final day to win the Mid-Con Baseball Tournament, defeating the Southern Utah Thunderbirds, 12-4, Saturday afternoon at Shehee Stadium.

With two outs in the bottom of the first inning, Matt VanDerBosch legged out a double to left field, and the Golden Eagles started the onslaught. Josh Lex singled, Grant Plumley tripled, Scott Modeste was hit by a pitch, Ricky Rivera singled, and Jon Tackett doubled to give Oral Roberts a 5-0 lead.

The Thunderbirds did not help their cause, as the pitching staff could not find the strike zone. In the first two innings alone, three different Southern Utah pitchers hit three batters and walked two others. The Golden Eagles put six more runs on the board in the second inning, with Ricky Rivera accounting for half of those with a home run.

With a double-digit lead, Oral Roberts starter Taylor McIntyre was able to comfortably pitch, giving up only two hits and a walk in the first five innings while striking out six Thunderbird batters. In the sixth inning, Southern Utah put four hits together and took advantage of two Oral Roberts errors to score three runs.

McIntyre settled down and retired nine of his last eleven batters to earn the victory for the Golden Eagles. Jason Gillins pitched well for Southern Utah, scattering eight hits and giving up only one run in 6 2/3 innings of relief.

Lex, Plumley, Rivera, McIntyre, and Brian Hanson all represented Oral Roberts on the All-Tournament Team, with Rivera winning the Most Valuable Player award after batting .571 during the weekend with five runs scored, two home runs, and ten runs batted in.

Southern Utah placed four players on the All-Tournament Team, with Shelby Guest, Amos Burgess, Justin Abbott, and Ryan Zimmerman being honored. Western Illinois also had four representatives in Ryan Schmidgall, Blake Schultz, Kyle Malan, and Corey Ferger, while David Kiefer was the only representative from Centenary.

Oral Roberts now awaits the announcement of the NCAA Baseball Tournament bracket, to take place on Memorial Day, Monday, May 31, at 11 a.m. Central Time.