WICHITA -- The Wichita State University baseball team polished off a three-game sweep of the Niagara University Purple Eagles as the Shockers scored seven runs in the fifth inning to cruise to a 12-0 win Sunday afternoon.
The three-game sweep gives the Shockers a perfect 3-0 record to start the 2011 campaign while Niagara falls to 0-3 on the season.
Chirs O'Brien went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and three RBI, including a two-run home run in the bottom fo the first. Kevin Hall had a solid day at the plate and in the field as the senior centerfielder went 3-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI while also making a spectacular catch against the wall in center field.
Preston Springer was 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored and an RBI for WSU.
Wynton Bernard picked up two hits in four trips to the dish for Niagara.
WSU starting pitcher Josh Smith was in control throughout his five innings of work, holding the Purple Eagles to only two hits while sitting down five batters on strikes. Four pitchers relieved Smith, each working an inning a piece to close out the shutout.
Wichita State scored three in the first and added another run in the home half of the third before exploding for seven runs in the fifth inning. Tyler Grimes led off the inning with a single and then came into score on an RBI double off the bat of Springer. After NU intentionally walked Johnny Coy, O'Brien stepped up and singled through the middle, scoring Springer with the second run of the game. A ground-rule double off the bat of Don Lambert added two more runs while Walker Davidson had a stand-up triple to score two more for WSU.
Davidson finished the game going 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBI. Grimes was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI.
Next up for the Shockers is a trip to Tulsa, Okla., to take on Oral Roberts on Tuesday, Feb. 22., with the first pitch scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Wichita State returns home for a three-game set against North Dakota beginning on Friday, Feb. 25, with game one scheduled to begin at 3 p.m.