ORAN -- Oran rode the longball to an early lead on the way to an 8-1 Scott-
Mississippi Conference win over East Prairie on Monday.
Host Oran (19-4, 6-1 in conference) got a two-run homer from Austin Dumey and a solo shot from Tyler Beardslee in the first inning to take a 3-0 lead.
"We got down early, kind of hung our heads a little bit and never really regrouped," said East Prairie coach Gary Scott, whose team fell to 11-9 overall, 2-2 in the conference.
While playing through intermittent rain showers, the first-inning runs proved to be all the Oran Eagles needed behind a solid pitching performance from lefty Chase Seyer.
"Our pitching and defense was good today, plus we hit the ball well at times," said Oran coach Mitch Wood, whose Eagles pounded 10 hits. "With the weather like it is, it helps to do what you can do early.
"I really thought we were in a groove and, if we had a pretty day, we could have done more damage."
East Prairie Eagle starter and loser Zach Secoy, who allowed only three hits although two were of the big-fly variety, worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the second, then escaped with two stranded in the third to keep his team in it at 3-0.
Secoy was relieved by Tyler Reynolds to open the fourth inning.
Oran added some insurance as they greeted Reynolds with a four-run outburst.
Alex Chasteen led off with a double. Next batter Caleb Seyer reached on an error while Chasteen advanced to third base. Seyer took second on defensive indifference (no throw), preceding Kody Campbell's two-run single for a 5-0 advantage.
Campbell moved to second on a tardy throw-in from the outfield, then on to third on a throwing error. He scored on Dumey's groundout to go ahead 6-0. Cleanup hitter Chase Seyer crushed a shot deep down the right-field line for a solo home run, capping the four-run rally.
Campbell's RBI double closed Oran's scoring in the fifth.
Meanwhile, backed by an errorless defense, Chase Seyer was cruising along with a five-hit shutout.
In the sixth, Taylor White spoiled the shutout bid and put up East Prairie's lone run with a solo homer to straightaway center field. It was a team-leading fifth home run for White.
"I have to credit their pitching," said Scott. "He (Chase Seyer) was throwing it well. We hit some balls hard, but right at 'em."
Seyer went six innings, gave up the one run on six hits with seven strikeouts and two walks. Paul Bucher relieved with a 1-2-3 seventh inning.
Campbell, hitting well all season for the Eagles, went 2-for-2 with two runs scored and a RBI. Dumey was 2-for-4 with three RBIs and what proved to be the game-winning hit, his first-inning homer.
Caleb Seyer, Chase Seyer, Joey Williams, Chris Asmus, Beardslee and Chasteen each collected single hits for Oran.
White went 2-for-3 for East Prairie.
"We're hitting the ball--we're playing well right now," said Wood. "We've played well the last two weeks and we're getting healthier."
Oran was besieged with injuries to several key players as the season opened.
Better health, in conjunction with a little position shuffling, appear to have the Eagles on track going into district play, which opens on Monday at Oran.
"Our most positive change of the year has been at catcher," Wood said. "Joey's (former catcher Williams) doing better at first base and we like (present catcher Caleb) Seyer's arm back there. Joey's had surgery on his arm.
"Also we're looking to the future. I was looking for a catcher and I thought Caleb (a sophomore) would be a good person to put in there and we put Chase (a junior) in the outfield."
Both East Prairie and Oran have one regular-season contest remaining.
Oran visits Hayti today while East Prairie hosts Chaffee.