Baseball off to hot start as they begin home opener Friday

7-1 record is best start since 2021



WSU infielder Kodie Kolden swings at a pitch during an NCAA collegiate baseball game, April 2, at Bailey-Brayton Field.

JAKE HULL, Evergreen reporter

WSU baseball (7-1) starts their first homestand of 2023 as Southern Indiana comes to town for a three-game series with first pitch scheduled for 4:05 p.m. starting Friday.

This season the Cougs have put up impressive numbers, scoring 84 runs on 77 hits. They are also a perfect 14-14 in stolen base attempts this year. 

WSU is led by Jonah Advincula, Jacob McKeon and Cam Magee. Both Advincula and McKeon have 15 RBIs through eight games in 2023. Advincula has 14 hits and has scored 11 runs to give him a batting average of .452. McKeon has a batting average of .324 with 11 hits and six runs scored. Magee has 10 RBIs this season with nine runs for a batting average of .350. All three players have two home runs each to lead the team. 

Of Advincula’s 14 hits, four doubles and one triple. He has also walked five times and struck out three. Sam Brown is also having a good start to the season. The University of Portland transfer has eight hits and six RBIs for a batting average of .276.

The last time the Cougs played was over the weekend as they played four games in San Diego as they competed in the Tony Gwynn Classic. They went 3-1 with their only defeat being Friday against UC Irvine. Their largest victory of the weekend was a 14-1 rout of San Diego State. 

Southern Indiana comes to Pullman Friday as WSU will host their first home series of 2023. On the season, Southern Indiana has a record of 5-3. Their first week of action saw them defeat Western Illinois University three-out-of four times.

They then lost 6-4 against Lipscomb University before taking two games off Bellarmine University. Their most recent game against Bellarmine saw them score 18 runs, their most of the season. They have scored 54 runs in their first games of the season, compared to 84 from WSU. 

Offensively, Southern Indiana is led by Tucker Ebest and Caleb Niehaus. Ebest has seven hits with 11 RBIs helping push his batting average to .241. Niehaus has seven RBIs and seven hits for a bating average of .304. Ebest has also homered three times in 2023. 

Pitching-wise, Southern Indiana is led by Tyler Hutson and Caleb Meeks. Hutson has pitched 10 innings in two starts with 10 strikeouts and four runs on eight hits for an ERA of 2.70. Meeks has pitched 7.2 innings in his two starts and has eight strikeouts with five runs on seven hits. His ERA so far is 5.87.

As a team, Southern Indiana pitchers have allowed eight home runs on the season compared to one from the Cougs. Southern Indiana has also collectively struck out 56 batters and walked 27. The Cougs have struck out 92 batters and walked 29. Southern Indiana has a collective ERA of 3.44 while the Cougs post a 3.42 ERA. 

After the three-game series against Southern Indiana, the Cougs will host Seattle U for one game in Pullman on Tuesday. The next series will be the Pac-12 Conference opener for the Cougs as they will travel down to Corvallis, Oregon as they will take on the Oregon State Beavers for a three-game series starting March 10.