BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – WKU senior second baseman Scott Wilcox and sophomore outfielder Trevor Lowe combined for seven hits and three RBI on Saturday afternoon at Nick Denes Field, powering the Hilltoppers to a 6-4 series-clinching win over UNC Asheville (1-2).
Wilcox tied a career high with four hits, going 4-of-5 at the plate with two RBI, a home run and a double. He was a triple shy of becoming the first WKU player in WKU Baseball history to hit for the cycle. Lowe also equaled a career high with his three hits, singling twice and roping an RBI double down the left field line in the eighth inning to tack on an insurance run for the Hilltoppers.
WKU (4-2) scored the first five runs of the game, jumping out to a 5-0 advantage with a pair of runs in the third and seventh innings plus Wilcox’s solo homer in the fifth. Wilcox knocked a single to left field to get the scoring started in the third, plating freshman designated hitter Hunter Wood. Junior shortstop Cody Wofford scored on a wild pitch later in the frame to make the count 2-0.
Wilcox homered in the fifth to extend the WKU lead to 3-0 and Wofford followed suit in the seventh inning with a two-run bomb that gave the Hilltoppers a 5-0 cushion. Wilcox’s multi-RBI game was the 12th of his career while Wofford’s two RBI marked the second time this season he achieved the feat.
The Bulldogs rallied for four runs in the eighth inning but junior relief pitcher Brennan Pearson struck out Robert McIntosh with the bases loaded to preserve the WKU lead at 5-4. Lowe ripped his third hit of the game down the left field line in WKU’s half of the inning to tack on a key insurance run and the final margin, 6-4.
Junior left-handed closer Ian Tompkins notched his second save of the series and third on the season by striking out three Bulldog batters in the ninth. Senior lefty Austin Clay (2-0) picked up his second win of the season with a five-inning shutout performance, scattering three hits and striking out one. Clay tied a career low for hits allowed in a five-inning start (3) and didn’t give up a run for the first time in his career when lasting five innings.
Sophomore reliever Jackson Sowell tossed a career-high 2.0 relief innings, striking out three batters and allowing two hits.
Junior catcher Ryan Messex, Lowe, Wilcox and Wood all tallied multiple hits in the game, marking the second time this season WKU has had four players with multiple hits in a game. Messex, Wood and Lowe represented WKU’s No.7-9 hitters in the lineup and they combined to pound out seven hits in 11 at bats. WKU pounded out a season-high 14 hits and has now won four-straight games at Nick Denes Field.
The Hilltoppers go for the sweep of UNC Asheville Sunday at Nick Denes Field with first pitch time set for 1 p.m. (CT). Sunday’s game will be another Sunday Fun Day with all children ages 12 or under receiving free admission and an opportunity to run the bases following the game.
Season tickets for the 2014 WKU Baseball season are on sale now and can be purchased online at WKUSports.com or by calling 1-800-5-BIGRED. The season ticket package includes 28 general admission tickets to any home games of choice for just $35. For more information on WKU Baseball, follow @WKUBaseball on Twitter or visit WKUSports.com.