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Elam delivers as Shockers sweep twinbill

  • Eagle correspondent
  • Published Monday, March 10, 2014, at 6:42 a.m.


Things just seemed to fall into place for Wichita State pitcher Cale Elam this weekend.

Elam was supposed start Saturday against Stephen F. Austin, but this potentially posed a problem because his wife, Kelby, was due to give birth.

When bad weather postponed the game and created a doubleheader Sunday, Elam was able to start Sunday’s first game, his newborn son Kaden having arrived safely.

“We had talked about ‘If you have him in the morning, am I going to pitch or not going to pitch?’ It made it a lot easier decision when the game got (postponed) and I knew that’s where I wanted to be,” Elam said.

Cale and Kelby welcomed Kaden at about 9:15 a.m. Saturday.

“Yeah, it was my family, but these guys are kind of like my family, too,” he said.

His Shocker teammates brought gifts, scoring their first runs in the past 23 innings. WSU (9-4) pushed across three runs in the sixth and one in eighth for a 4-3 first-game victory.

“He’s probably one of the only players I’ve ever coached who could have a child and go out and pitch the next day like he did,” WSU coach Todd Butler said. “He was focused, he had a little bit of rest, and he wanted the ball today, and I think he did a good job.”

Elam (2-0) gave up just two runs (one earned) in seven innings, striking out seven with no walks.

In the nightcap, freshman Sam Tewes (3-1) pitched seven strong innings in a 7-0 shutout.

“(A shutout) is hard to do in college baseball, and he did a really good job,” Butler said. “He’s going to be really special.”

The doubleheader victories couldn’t have come at a better time.

Tuesday’s game at Oklahoma State begins a six-game road trip that includes games at UC Santa Barbara and Arizona State. WSU will return home to begin Valley play March 21 against Missouri State.

In the opener, the Shockers trailed 2-0 entering the bottom of the sixth when Casey Gillaspie sent a high popup into the swirling south wind that Lumberjacks shortstop Will Vest couldn’t handle. By the time he corralled the ball, Gillaspie was sliding into second base.

Chase Simpson followed with a single to right field that scored Gillaspie, then Micah Green got a towering fly ball up in the wind, which carried it over the left-field fence for a 3-0 lead.

Green was 4 for 7 with four RBIs on the day with two more singles in the opener and a double in the nightcap.

“He’s really confident right now,” Butler said. “He’s going up there, hitting with two strikes, he hit the big home run, he pulls his hands inside and gets it and hits it out. He’s a much-improved player.”

Once the scoring monkey was off their backs, the Shockers kept up the offense in the second game, scoring six runs on 12 hits – four off Lumberjacks ace Dillon Mangham, who entered the game with a 0.86 ERA.

WSU had four doubles and two triples –back-to-back by Joe Haddox and Garrett Bayliff in the seventh – among its 12 hits in the nightcap.

First game

Dickey cf501001.333
Sanchez rf401002.383
Olson dh402002.255
Handel lf412000.295
Ramos 2b422000.283
K. Thornell 1b401101.225
Marberry c200001.300
O’Neill ph100000.250
B. Thonell 3b401100.239
Vest ss300002.176
Fikes ph101000.273
Totals 36 3 11 2 0 9
Wichita State
Bobbit dh400001.300
Bayliff rf311010.260
Gillaspie 1b310010.455
Simpson 3b411101.250
Green cf413300.348
Baker c 402000.222
Kihle lf301002.364
Parker 2b300000.125
Phillips ss301001.364
Totals 31 4 9 4 2 5

Stephen F. Austin0101000013
Wichita State00000301x4

E — Vest, Phillips.. DP — SFA 3. LOB — SFA 7, WSU 5. 2B — Handel (4), Kihle (3). 3B — K. Thornell (1). HR — Green (2). SB — Bayliff (1). CS — Dickey, Baker.

Cross L,0-36832044.07
Wichita State
Elam W,2-07521070.98
Vielock S,31311011.80

WP — Thompson, Elam. HBP — Marberry (by Elam). Umpires — home, Conan Sterobel; first, Terry Harrison; third, Travis Olson. T — 2:04.

Second game

Dickey cf301000.333
Sanchez rf400001.353
Handel lf301001.298
Jackson lf100000.154
B. Thornell 3b300001.224
Ramos 2b402000.300
Fikes dh300000.214
X. Smith dh100000.000
Olson c301000.260
K. Thornell 1b101000.244
O’Neill 1b101010.333
Vest ss301000.189
Totals 30 0 8 0 1 3
Wichita State
Harbutz dh100001.167
Koeiman dh200000.185
Haddox dh211001.500
Bayliff rf413100.296
Gillaspie 1b411000.438
Simpson 3b412100.275
Green cf311101.347
Kihle lf201000.370
Dearman lf010011.231
Parker 2b301100.182
Zimmerman c301101.333
Arens c100001.000
Kirk ss301000.211
Totals 32 6 12 5 1 6

Stephen F. Austin0000000000
Wichita State01000311x6

DP — SFA 2, WSU 3. LOB — SFA — 6, WSU — 7. 2B — Bayliff (3), Green (3), Simpson (4), Gillaspie (5). 3B — Haddox (1), Bayliff (1). S — Dickey, B. Thornell, Kihle. SF — Green. SB — Dickey (6), Bayliff (2), Kihle (1), Dearman 2 (9). CS — Parker.

Mangham L,2-10000002.00
Wichita State
Tewes, W,3-17700132.70

WP — Mangham, Bishop. HBP — Parker (by Mangham), Kirk (by Bishop). Umpires — home, Terry Harrison; first, Travis Olson; third, Conan Strobel. T — 2:14. A — 2,352.

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