MOREHEAD, Ky.- Ethan Hollingsworth and Billy Morrison each threw complete seven-inning shutouts, combining to allow Morehead State just eight hits on the day, as Western Michigan swept Saturday’s doubleheader, 7-0, 6-0. The Broncos improve to 10-4-1 on the season.
It was the first career shutout for both Western Michigan right-handers. It was just Hollingsworth’s third complete game of his career and Morrison’s second.
In one of his best performances of the season, Hollingsworth (2-1) gave up a pair of singles in the first and a base hit in the seventh, but for the rest of the game went untouched. After allowing base hits to the first two batters he faced and walking the third, Hollingsworth retired the next 14 batters straight. His streak of perfection was broken when he issued a walk with two outs in the fifth. He finished the game retiring six of the next seven, as MSU’s top hitter Andrew Wertz came up with a single to lead off the seventh.
The defense put forth a solid effort as well, as Western Michigan recorded 12 groundouts and did not commit an error. Hollingsworth struck out a total of five.
Offensively, Matthew Abro went 2-for-4 at the plate and drove runs in the first and third. Neal Miller also drove in a run in the third, as WMU went ahead, 3-0. The Broncos sealed the win with four runs in the final inning, making the most of a two-out error, plating the last three unearned. Chris Lewis and Kyle Galbraith each recorded an RBI.
Morrison (2-0) would be just as dominant on the mound in the nightcap, scattering five hits, while striking out three. All five knocks would come in the first three innings, as Morrison retired the next 12 batters. Morrison easily would have finished out the game without allowing another base runner, but the first batter in the seventh received a free pass on a fielding error.
Western Michigan was quick to take the lead in game two, turning out a five-run second. The Broncos loaded the bases with two outs on singles by Max Kelmigian and Kyle Gendron and a Derek Mosher walk. All three advanced a base, with Kelmigian scoring WMU’s first run of the game, on a wild pitch. A walk to Grant Simotes again loaded the bases and Zach Gentile cleared the bags with a three-run double. Joe Sheets came through with a double of his own to score Gentile before Morehead State could get out of the inning.
The Brown & Gold capped off its scoring with a run in the sixth, generated by Sheets’ second RBI double of the game. Gendron and Simotes also had base hits in the inning.
Starters Tyler Bess (1-2) and Josh Schneider (0-2) both took a loss for Morehead State (6-7).
Western Michigan will look to take a pair of wins against Morehead State tomorrow, with doubleheader action starting at 1 p.m. ET.