“Momentum,” Southern Miss coach Scott Berry said. “We were able to keep the momentum by scoring runs [and] getting two-out RBI hits.” Eleven of the Golden Eagles’ runs came off of two-out RBI hits in Southern Miss’ 14-4 Saturday win over Old Dominion.
Southern Miss’ bats stayed hot after coming off an 11-0 win on Friday night. The Golden Eagles totaled 15 hits on the day with four different Southern Miss hitters posting three-hit games.
“A lot of guys contributed to that win today,” Hunter Slater said who went 3-for-4 with two RBI. “A lot of crooked numbers on the board up there. [We] just kept turning the lineup over, extending the innings, a lot of two-out hits there. Those are backbreakers and that was kind of the storyline right there.”
Southern Miss scored in first six innings and posted two innings with four runs. In five of those six innings, Southern Miss scored at least one run off a two-out RBI hit and in the sixth inning, all four runs came with two outs.
Gabe Montenegro went 3-for-4 and with the addition of two walked he reached base five times, scored four times and knocked in two RBI. Danny Lynch went 3-for-4 with two RBI and Bryant Bowen went 3-for-5 with two RBI.
“Gabe [Montenegro] is setting the tone,” Berry said. “[Hunter] Slater is seeing the ball really well. We have some guys that have a really good approach and taking a really good swing and not missing pitches when they get them and capitalizing on those opportunities that we saw ourselves miss on several times earlier in the year.”
The Golden Eagles’ pitching staff was forced to make do without regular Saturday starter Stevie Powers, who missed due to injury. Southern Miss used four pitchers in the game, with Mason Strickland getting the start. The pitching staff gave up 15 hits but stranded 17 Old Dominion runners throughout the game.
“[Old Dominion] left a lot of guys on, but a lot of momentum stayed in our dugout with that,” Berry said. “Very proud of our guys and approach at the plate. Pitchers came out and pitch to contact. For the most part, played good defense.”
The Monarchs stranded two runners on base in every inning, with the one exception coming in the second inning, where the team left one runner on base.
Strickland went 3.1 innings pitched, where he allowed one run on five hits, walked one batter and struck out three. Reliever Adam Jackson got the win after relieving Strickland on the mound. In 1.2 innings, Jackson allowed two runs on three hits and struck out one.
Southern Miss improves to 14-6 overall and 5-0 in Conference USA, while Old Dominion falls to 15-7 overall and 1-4 in C-USA.
First pitch for the Sunday game is set for 11 a.m.