Bears sweep doubleheader, take series 3-1 over Demons

CONWAY, Arkansas — The University of Central Arkansas Bears swept a Southland Conference doubleheader for the second consecutive weekend, beating Northwestern State 9-2 and 13-8 on Sunday at Bear Stadium.

The Bears (17-22, 12-16) got a pair of home runs from junior right fielder Connor Emmet and drew nine walks and were hit by a pitch eight times. UCA ran out to a 6-1 lead through five innings but saw the Demons rally with seven runs over the sixth through eighth innings to make it a one-run game. UCA came back and matched the Demons’ scoring exactly in those three innings, with Emmet’s second home run _ a three-run shot _ sealing the victory.

UCA totaled 13 hits and 13 runs batted in, with four players having multi-RBI games. Emmet had four, while A.J. Mendolia, Taylor Daniell and Drew Sturgeon had two apiece. Emmet and Daniell had three hits each, while senior first baseman Coby Potvin scored three times.

Senior Brad Verel pitched the third inning to earn his first victory of the season, while junior Tyler Navarro went the final 2 1/3 innings, allowing just two hits and one run while striking out a pair to earn his first save.

The Bears put up six runs in the sixth inning to break open the first game after NSU cut the UCA lead to 3-2 in the top of the sixth. The Bears scored the six runs on just one hit and scored all of them with two outs. UCA drew five walks and got a three-run triple into the right field corner by Potvin in the frame.

UCA also scored three earlier runs in the third inning without the benefit of a hit. The Bears had two walks and the Demons contributed two wild pitches, a passed ball and an error. UCA finished the game with nine runs on just three hits, drawing eight walks again. Senior Mark Moyer got the victory, tossing five innings and striking out six while allowing just one earned run.

The Bears closed out their nine-game homestand by winning seven of nine games. UCA travels to New Orleans to take on the second-place Privateers next weekend at Maestri Field.