Valparaiso, Ind. - In a game featuring two of the best pitchers in the Mid-Continent Conference, 19th-ranked Oral Roberts used a three-run sixth inning to defeat Valpo 4-1. The second game of the scheduled doubleheader was suspended due to darkness after two scoreless innings and will be continued Sunday at 11 a.m. followed by another twinbill.
ORU's Dennis Bigley struck out a career-high 13 in 8 innings, while Valpo's Tom Starck fanned seven and allowed three earned runs over 7 innings. Bigley (9-1) allowed three hits and one run, while walking two. Justin Ramsey pitched the 9th for his eighth save.
Starck (4-6), last year's Mid-Con Co-Pitcher of the Year, yielded eight hits and three walks. Adam Knobel hurled 2 scoreless innings, allowing one hit, while striking out three and walking one. Knobel also pitched the first scoreless inning of the suspended game.
ORU (34-8, 11-0 Mid-Con) took a 1-0 lead in the fourth on Nate Griffin's sacrifice fly following consecutive singles by Ricky Rivera and Jeff Tuttle.
The Golden Eagles increased their advantage to 4-0 in the sixth. Rivera, who went 4-for-4, hit a one-out single and went to third on Tuttle's double. Rivera scored on Griffin's single and Tuttle touched home after a passed ball. The final run occurred as a result of a throwing error by Valpo's third baseman on Matt VanderBosch's bunt single.
Valpo (13-23, 6-3) plated its run in the sixth when Kevin Kutansky delivered an RBI single, scoring Jeff Rickert, who singled. Rickert had advanced to second on a wild pitch and to third on a balk.